Headlines: March 10th, 2011

The Disabled Facilities Grant programme will receive an extra £11m, bringing it up to £180m for the year starting in April 2011.

The funding is allocated through councils, and the 150 with the highest level of relative need will see the amount they receive go up next year, with other areas continuing to be funded by the same amount.

The grant is used to help meet the cost of providing adaptations and facilities to enable people with disabilities to stay in their home – whether they are the owner or a tenant. It can be used to provide people with better access to their home and to move around it more freely or to use the essential facilities within their home so that they can manage as independently as possible.

Modifications can include installing ramps or widening doorways for easier wheelchair access; installing a stair lift or providing a downstairs bathroom to improve access to sleeping and sanitary facilities; or adapting heating and lighting controls to make them easier to use.

Changes to make it easier to care for another person who lives in the property, such as a bath-lift for a disabled child, can also be funded.

To ensure that those households most in need benefit, the amount of grant people are entitled to depends on their ability to contribute to the cost of the adaptations, except where the application is for a disabled child or young person under the age of nineteen.