Local authority support and needs assessments

From 1st April 2015 changes have been made to how  people receive information, advice and support in Merton. The Merton Adult Access Team no longer provide assessments of needs. The service has been replaced by an Information Advice and Support Hub, which is operated in partnership with the Voluntary Sector. You will now need to contact one of five voluntary organisations who will arrange for a needs assessment for people with dementia and their carers. They will also be able to put you in contact with organisations and charities providing support locally.

You may want to get help with the assessment process or financial assessments from a friend of through your local Alzheimer’s Society office or Carers UK. Your GP, clinician or other support worker can arrange a needs assessment or you can request this directly yourself. Services and support are offered by the local authority where the person with care needs lives. If you are arranging a care assessment on behalf of someone else you will need their authorisation.

Arranging a needs assessment

To arrange for a needs assessment for a person with dementia or a carer, please contact one of the following two organisations;

The Wimbledon Guild provides general information and advice, social activities, outreach services and care needs assessment. Tel No: 0208 946 0735, opening times 9am -5pm Monday – Friday.

Carers’ Support Merton provides general information and advice, support for carers and care needs assessments. Tel No: 0208 646 7515, opening times 10am – 4 pm Monday – Friday.

You can use the gov.uk Apply for a needs assessment from social services tool to apply for assessments.

Local support with benefits and care assessments

To get local support and advice, the Merton Welfare Benefits Service offers advice on welfare benefits and home visits to help you to complete forms if required. You can email then on welfarebenefitsteam@merton.gov.uk or call 020 8545 4178.

Although Merton council no longer arranges needs assessments, they are required by law under the Care Act 2014 to provide information and guidance. More information can be found on the Merton council website. You can still apply direct to Merton Council for a financial assessment to help with care costs. You can contact them in person at the council offices at London Borough of Merton, Civic Centre, London Road, Morden, SM4 5DX. You can also email them the Merton Adult Access Team on adultaccessteam@merton.gov.uk or telephone them Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm on 020 8274 4901. For emergency out of hours support please call 020 8543 9750.


Local Support in Merton

The Alzheimer’s Society Dementia Connect search facility lists the services available in Merton for people with dementia and their carers or supporters. You can search by service type or postcode. They can be contacted on telephone number: 020 86870922 or by email: merton@alzheimers.org.uk

The Merton Dementia Hub offers a wide range of activities and services including a memory clinic, dementia cafes and support groups for people with dementia and their carers and supporters. The Hub also provides dementia advisers and support workers providing face to face support and information. Merton Dementia Hub, 67 Whitford Gardens, Mitcham, CR4 4AA. You can call them on 020 8687 0922.

The Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) run a local Merton and Lambeth advice service. Details of the local CAB offices can be found on the Merton and Lambeth CAB website. The local CAB office can be found at 7 Crown Parade, Morden, SM4 5DA. To arrange a face to face meeting at one of the local offices or for details of community based advise, please call 0344 243 8430.

Support for carers

Caring for a person with young onset dementia or supporting a family member or friend can be rewarding but challenging. It’s important that you get the support needed to stay healthy and enable you to continue with day to day life. Support from organisations like Alzheimer’s Society, Care UK, local and peer support groups and forums can be invaluable.

The Alzheimer’s Society Merton services search facility lists the services available in Merton for people with dementia and their carers or supporters.

Details of activities and the local Merton Hubbits Peer Support Group and Merton Oasis Peer Support Group is available from the Merton Dementia Hub, 67 Whitford Gardens, Mitcham, CR4 4AA. You can email them at merton@alzheimers.org.uk or call on 020 86870922.

Locally, Carers’ Support Merton provides general information, advice and support for unpaid carers over 18yrs. You can call them on 0208 646 7515 between 10am – 4 pm Monday – Friday.

The Carers UK is a national website aimed at carers and the challenges they face. They offer comprehensive information and guidance and an online carers forum to share experiences and get emotional support from others in similar situations. You can email them at info@carersuk.org or call the advice line on 0808 808 7777.


National Support advice services

Counselling Directory is a confidential service that encourages those in distress to seek help. The directory contains information on many different types of distress, as well as articles, news, and events.  All counsellors listed on the site have provided qualifications and insurance cover or proof of membership with a professional body.

Many people in the earlier stages of dementia decide to make a record of their preferences in case they are unable to articulate these at some future point.  This can be done through what is known as a ‘Living Will’, which consists of both an Advance Decision to refuse treatment and an Advance Statement of preferences and wishes.  My Living Will provides free information about how to do this, and an option to create a Living Will for a small fee.

Your local Citizens Advice Bureau team can offer advice and help. You can search for your local branch on the Citizens Advice Bureau website.  They offer a wide range of consumer advice if you have had a problem with a product or service and guidance if you are thinking of making a purchase. Their helpline is 03454 04 05 06

The Advice Now website provides national guidance for a range of topics from money and tax to benefits and housing.

The Unbiased website provides a search facility for professional services. You can search for a local solicitor, accountant or financial advisor in your area. All listed providers are impartial and independent of product providers.

The Money Advice Service (MAS) was set up by government to offer free and impartial advice. The Money Advice Line opening hours are Monday to Friday, 8am to 8pm and Saturday, 9am to 1pm on 0300 500 5000. You can also email them at enquiries@moneyadviceservice.org.uk


Find approved tradespeople and companies

Merton council does not offer an approved contractor scheme for workmen. If you wish to employ workmen or buy services from a local business you can check if they have been approved by Trading Standards or other organisations and review customer feedback before paying any money or signing a contract.

The Check a trade scheme provides a postcode search facility of tradespeople and business which have been used and reviewed by customers.

Trading Standards offers a Buy with confidence search facility to search local businesses that have been pre vetted and approved.

Rated People allows you to post a job (like install new windows) on their website and allows up to 3 tradespeople to provide quotes for the work. We would always advise caution when sharing personal information and any quotations received should be thoroughly checked so you understand what’s provided. You should investigate the company offering the quote using the Check a Trade and Buy with Confidence websites.

The My Builder website also allows you to post a job requiring builders or other tradespeople to provide quotations.

The Unbiased website provides a search facility for professional services. You can search for a local solicitor, accountant or financial advisor in your area. All listed providers are impartial and independent of product providers.

TrustMark is an award-winning scheme is supported by government and consumer protection groups. It’s designed to help search for reliable, trustworthy tradesmen for home improvements and repairs. TrustMark firms have been checked to ensure they meet government standards and comply with a code of practice.

What to do when things go wrong?

If you have purchased good or services and have a problem with them and cant resolve it with the company, you can report the issue to the Trading Standards Team – Merton Civic Centre, London Road, Morden, SM4 5DX. You can email them at trading.standards@merton.gov.uk or call on 020 8545 4018.

You can find lots of consumer guidance and report an issue to the Citizens Advice consumer service or call the helpline on 03454 04 05 06

If you feel you have been the victim of a scam or are concerned about tradespeople or others asking for money for works that you have not requested, please contact your local police or call 101.

You have a right to feel safe and secure in your home and to request that any pre-arranged visitors show valid identification such as a staff card before you allow them in. You can ask them to wait whilst you call the business or ask them to return when you have someone with you. If you are not expecting them to visit your home, be wary.


Travel and transport

Help with travel

Merton Council offers a Blue Badge Scheme Blue Badge Scheme which provides parking and other motoring concessions for people who are registered blind or have mobility problems or who cant use public transport. If you are caring for a person with dementia, you may also be eligible for the scheme which allows users to park free of charge for an unlimited period in any Merton disabled parking bay, pay and display bay or shared use and permit holder bay.

You may be eligible for a Freedom Pass from Merton to help with travel costs. The Freedom Passes gives free travel on most public transport at any time.

When using public transport becomes difficult, the council and some charities may be able to offer subsidised transport, such as taxis or mobility buses. Merton Taxicard and Capital Call schemes.

Driving assessments

The DVLA should be informed of if you have received a diagnosis of dementia. The driver assessment request form and information from the DVLA can be found on the gov.uk guide for DVLA Drivers Medical Group.

You can write to them at – Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA), Swansea, SA99 1TU. eftd@dvla.gsi.gov.uk Telephone number 0300 790 6806 (Monday to Friday 8.00am–5.30pm, Saturday 8.00am–1.00pm). Main DVLA telephone number is 0300 790 6801.

Details of mobility centers offering driving assessments in your area can be found on the Forum of mobility centers website.

There is a driving assessment center in Carshalton covering for south west London. They are a registered charity and also provide advise about adaptions and training – Queen Elizabeth Foundation Mobility Services, Damson Way, Fountain Drive, Carshalton, Surrey, SM5 4NR. You can email then at mobility@qef.org.uk or call to make an appointment or to talk through the assessment process on 020 8770 1151.


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