Getting out and about
When you have care needs it is all too easy to retreat into your shell and try and avoid the difficulties presented by going out. This can however restrict the potential for living an independent life and can make for lots of day to day problems.
Help may be available.
Many areas of the country will have some form of community transport or dial-a-ride service, which is bookable and will come and pick you up at your door and deliver you directly to where you want to go. There is likely to a small but reasonable charge for this, but in some cases, such as the scheme run by Transport for London, the service is completely free. This service may well come linked with the provision of a trained volunteer to assist you when you get on and off the bus
Getting to and around the shops can obviously be difficult if you have restricted mobility, particularly in some modern shopping malls, but help with transport may be available, and if you need a wheelchair or other form of physical assistance to get out and about then there may be a local Shopmobility scheme near you which can help. Alternatively some Age UK groups provide volunteers to accompany older people shopping.
Buggies and scooters to help you get around under your own steam are available for hire or purchase. They do differ in terms of quality so take advice before deciding. You may be entitled to Personal Independence Payments (PIP) to help with these costs. PIP can also be used to help purchase an appropriate car for your own use under the Motability scheme. If you already have your own car then you may be able to able to adapt it to your disability so that it is safer and more convenient to drive. There are a number of Mobility Centres throughout the country that can advise on this.
Most sources of help available will be very locality-specific, and you are likely to need to make enquiries locally to follow up on any of these ideas. If you do want to find out more we suggest that you look at sources of advice and information first.
As with everything else the important thing is to carefully consider what the consequences of your situation are, what you want to do about it, what you want to achieve, and what resources you have available. Then with this information make a plan.