East Lothian Council

Self-directed support (SDS)

How do I get self-directed support?

We understand that you are the best person to know what you need to improve your life.  We will support you through the steps to identify what your needs are and decide what type of support would best help you live the life you want to live.

If eligible, we will let you know how much money is available for you to spend on meeting your needs. You can then choose how best to use this money to improve your life.  Other people, such as family and friends or independent organisations, could help you too. You must be assessed so that we can find out if you are eligible for SDS.

Step 1.  Preparing for your assessment

Before your assessment, you can prepare by thinking about:

  • what you need
  • what is important to you
  • what resources you already have. 

Step 2.  Your assessment – ‘All About Me’

The assessment is called 'All about me'. We will work with you to help you answer questions about what you need and write them down on your 'All about me' assessment form .  You can get others to help too.  The answers to the questions will help us understand what social care support you may need, and how much money could be available (your estimated budget).

Step 3. Your estimated budget

If eligible for support we will estimate the money you could be entitled to (your budget), based on the answers in your questionnaire. This isn’t a final budget, but a guide to help you to develop your support plan.

Step 4. Your support plan

Your support plan will show us what you want to achieve and how you will use your budget to meet your needs.  You can use your budget as creatively as you like, as long as it helps you to achieve what is agreed in your support plan. We can help you to make your plan and other can help too. 

Step 5. Support plan agreed

Your plan must be agreed by East Lothian Council before your final budget can be confirmed.  

Step 6. Put your plan into action

Start using your support to live your life the way you want to, as agreed in your support plan.

Step 7. Check plan works

We will check your plan with you regularly to make sure you are happy with your support. We will help you look at what has worked, what hasn’t and why, and think together about any changes you need to make.


East Lothian Council, John Muir House Brewery Park Haddington East Lothian EH41 3HA.