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Self Directed Support (SDS)

Options for controlling your personalised care budget


Download our guide to Self Directed Support

Self Directed Support (SDS) empowers you to be fully in control of your personalised care budget so that you get the care and support you wish to receive.

Traditional models of social care services and how they are delivered and funded is changing. SDS was introduced in 2014, by the Scottish Government, as a way of recognising that each person and the type of care and support they require is unique. SDS empowers you, as an individual, to take control of the type of support, care and service you receive to meet your needs, lifestyle and the way you want to live your life.


As times have changed, so has the way we have delivered our services, but always with one ambition: to give the people of Aberdeen the best of care to enable them to live the best of lives.

As your trusted local social care charity, you are at the heart of everything we do. We listen and work with you to take a person centre approach to all of our services. We are committed to ensuring that we support and empower you to achieve the best health and social care outcomes.

We have SDS options available across a range of our children's services and adults' services.

The VSA team is right here for you; ready to provide you with a range of support and care options that can be tailored to meet your needs and budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

Self-directed support is not for everyone and many people are completely satisfied with receiving services that are arranged by their local authority. However there are a lot of people who could really benefit from having choice and control over the support they receive, such as having support staff visit them at times of their choosing or enjoying the consistency of care that can come from employing your own personal assistants or even the flexibility of using your budget to purchase services that meet your needs more creatively and individually than the services provided by the local authority.

SDS funding is available for anyone who has been assessed as eligible. This includes, unpaid carers, children, families, adults and people in their later years in life.

Individuals who have been assessed as eligible will then be given different choices to meet their care and support needs. Information and advice is given to help them choose the best option for them.

Each local authority across Scotland should have a dedicated information point. In Aberdeen City, please visit the 'my life' portal which provides further information on SDS in the city and how you can get access - Find out more

If you think the money you are offered is not enough, you do not have to accept it. You can dispute the amount offered. You will need to discuss with your council. You can accept the individual budget if you want, while your complaint is being dealt with. If you do not want to do this while your complaint is being considered, you can choose to get arranged services instead.

The first step in to get in touch with our SDS team, they can be reached at sds@vsa.org.uk or on 01224 212021. A member of the team will talk through what your personal needs, requirements and goals are. From there we will then discuss if you have an agreed budget in place with the local authority and how you plan to spend and manage your SDS budget.

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