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User Led Organisation Funding

Each year, we disburse funding to user led organisations (ULOs) and/or disabled peoples organisations (DPOs) to deliver training for people who employ or contract with personal assistants (PAs).

ULO funding grants are awarded to pay for training which will improve the knowledge and skills of personal assistants (PAs) and their employers (individual employers).

  • Individual employers are people who employ their own care and support staff using a social care direct payment from their local authority or their own money.
  • Personal assistants (PAs) are people who are employed directly by individuals (or families) who require care and support, rather than care providing organisations.

What type of training will be funded?

The cost of learning that meets the needs of individual employers and PAs, for example:

  • health and safety such as; assisting and moving, first aid or food safety
  • disability equality training
  • understanding the role of an employer or employer responsibilities
  • managing staff
  • boundaries and expectations of the employer and employee relationship
  • training to support specific situations (e.g. autism, dementia, BSL etc)
  • knowledge elements of the Care Certificate standards and where appropriate assessment that leads to the award of the Care Certificate.

The above list is not exhaustive.

How to apply

Applications for this funding are now closed.

Any questions?

If you would like to know more information about this funding please contact funding@skillsforcare.org.uk or call 0113 241 1275.


Ƶ has awarded funding to 22 organisations listed below to deliver training aimed at personal assistants and their employers for 2023/24.

Organisations by area:

The Disability Resource Centre (Bedfordshire)


Phone: 01582 470 900

Email: info@drcbeds.org.uk

Training is provided through their Care Academy, with a flexible package of training based on identified needs for IEs and PAs as well as options for pre-employer and employment pathways for PAs.

Training can be delivered using e-learning, online live videos and classroom and can include subjects such as (list is not exhaustive):

  • Introduction to being a PA and roles and responsibilities
  • Pre-employment skills training for personal assistants (PAs)
  • Care Certificate standards
  • Introduction to becoming an individual employer
  • Palliative and advanced care planning workshop
  • Emergency first aid
  • Health and wellbeing
  • Autism awareness
  • Visual impairment
  • Other condition specific awareness training

Disability Advice Service Lambeth (DASL)


Phone: 020 7738 5656

Email: enquiry.line@disabilitylambeth.org.uk

Training is to support people employing personal assistants (PAs) and will cover the following subjects:

  • Payroll for Individual Employers
  • Insurance and Legal Advice  
  • Safe recruitment
  • Staff management


Independent Lives (West Sussex)


Phone: 01903 219482 (option 4)

Email: training@independentlives.org 

Training will either be classroom based, as a workbook or via Zoom, contact Independent Lives directly for full details on how training will be delivered:

  • Basic First Aid
  • Dementia awareness
  • Disability awareness
  • Care Certificate
  • Challenging behaviours
  • Equality, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Food Hygiene
  • Health and safety
  • Infection control
  • Introduction to PA work
  • Introduction to Autism
  • Introduction to Personal Safety for Lone Workers
  • Manual Handling
  • Medication awareness
  • Mental Capacity 
  • Safeguarding


Employer training – via Zoom:

  • Employing a new PA
  • Recruitment and advertising
  • Becoming a fair employer
  • Effective management
  • Makaton level 1
  • Makaton level 2
  • Pica Awareness
  • Sensory considerations
  • Understanding stress and anxiety in Autism
  • Working with and supporting pathological demand avoidance (PDA) young people and adults
  • Introduction to a Trauma Informed Approach



Kingston Centre for Independent Living


Phone: 020 8546 9603

Email: enquiries@kcil.org.uk

Training will be delivered in a mixture of online e-learning and classroom setting in the local community:

  • Being a Good Boss (one to one training in person at home or at KCIL’s office)
  • Emergency First Aid at Work (in person)
  • Infection Control (online)
  • Manual Handling Awareness
  • Manual Handling Practical (in person)
  • Mental Health Awareness (in person or e-learning)
  • PA Induction Course (in person – both employers and PAs can attend together)
  • Safeguarding (e-learning)


Pathfinders Neuromuscular Alliance



Training for PA Employers, delivered virtually:

  • Introduction to becoming a PA Employer
  • Taking Charge of Your Care
  • Advertising and Hiring with High Support Needs
  • Managing and Structuring a Team for 24 Hour Care
  • Maintaining Your Autonomy and Independence
  • Safe Conflict and Difficult Conversations
  • Preparing for Change - Virtual Training
  • Q&A - How to be a good PA Employer


Training for personal assistants (PAs), delivered virtually:

  • Module 1.1: Introduction to Neuromuscular Conditions
  • Module 1.2: Independence and the Social Model of Disability
  • Module 1.3: Neuromuscular Conditions and Common Emergencies
  • Module 1.4: Common Equipment Used by People with Neuromuscular Conditions
  • Module 2.1: Ventilation - PA Training Programme
  • Module 2.2: Posture, Skin and Positioning
  • Module 2.3: Swallowing and Nutrition
  • Module 2.4: Physiotherapy and Exercise
  • Module 3.1: Working in Someone's Ƶ and Workplace
  • Module 3.2: Supporting Disabled People as Parents
  • Module 3.3: Respect, Intimacy and Personal Care - PA Training
  • Module 3.4: Supporting People with Sex and Relationships
  • Module 3.5: Supporting People with Their Emotional Health


RUILS (Richmond Users Independent Living Scheme)


Phone: 020 8831 6083

E-mail: info@ruils.co.uk

  • Deaf awareness (in person)
  • Equality and diversity (online)
  • First Aid in the Workplace (in person)
  • Health and Safety awareness (online)
  • Infection control (online)
  • Working with Individuals with Learning Disabilities (online tutor led)


Being an Independent Employer (IE) (online tutor led): This session will introduce current IEs and people who are becoming an IE to:

  • Employment legislation
  • Recruitment
  • Inductions
  • Supervision
  • Boundaries
  • Disciplinary and Grievances
  • Health and Safety incl. risk assessments.


Spectrum Centre for Independent Living (Southampton)


Telephone: 023 8033 0982

Textphone (Minicom): 023 8020 2649

Email: info@spectrumcil.co.uk


PA Employer Training for new employers (and those considering):

  • Pros and cons of employing PAs
  • Employer responsibilities and legal requirements (Contracts of employment, Grievance and disciplinary procedures etc)
  • Recruiting, retaining and managing PAs
  • Boundaries and expectations of the employer and employee relationship
  • Record keeping


PA Employer Training: already employing PAs:

  • Contracts of employment
  • Grievance and disciplinary procedures
  • Ending the employment contract.
  • How to manage underperforming PAs
  • Recruiting and managing PAs
  • Understanding the role of an employer or employer responsibilities
  • Managing staff
  • Boundaries and expectations of the employer and employee relationship
  • Supervision, training and development
  • Record keeping


PA training:

  • Moving and handling
  • First Aid
  • Infection control
  • Communication support
  • Training to support specific conditions (e.g. autism, dementia etc.)
  • Understanding the role of a Personal Assistant
  • Boundaries and expectations of the employer and employee relationship
  • Disability Equality Training


Surrey Independent Living Council (SILC)


Phone: 01483 458 111

Email: admin@surreyilc.org.uk

  • Assisted Eating and Drinking
  • Autism Awareness
  • Dementia Awareness 
  • Diabetes Awareness
  • Emergency First Aid at Work (EFAW) Accredited (classroom)
  • Epilepsy Awareness
  • Food Hygiene Awareness
  • Health and Safety Awareness
  • Individual Employer Webinars
  • Infection Control
  • Introduction to being a Personal Assistant
  • Introduction to being an Employer
  • Learning Disability Awareness
  • Medication Awareness 
  • Mental Capacity Act (MCA) 2005 Level 1

Moving and Positioning - fully certificated (in employer’s home)

Nutrition and Hydration

Person Centred Care

Responding to Behaviour that Challenges

Safeguarding Adults Level 1

Deaf-initely Women (Belper, Derbyshire)


Tel/Fax: 01773 828233

Text/Facetime: 07421 827 162

Email: info@deafinitelywomen.org.uk

Training delivered by people with lived experience.

  • An overview on to support and communicate with deafblind people
  • Basic Guiding skills
  • Communication and acquired deaf blindness
  • Deaf Equality training
  • Supporting and communicating with deaf people with dementia
  • Supporting and communicating with people with dementia and acquired hearing loss
  • Taster British Sign Language (BSL) session
  • Taster Deafblind Manual


Disability Direct – Blue Sky Brokers (Derby)


Phone: 01332 299449

Type Talk: 18001 01332 299449

Email: info@disabilitydirect.com


Training for employers and personal assistants:

  • Boundaries; Expectations of the Employer and Employee Relationship
  • Employment Law (understanding the role of employee and employer)
  • Equality and Diversity
  • First Aid training (at home)
  • Infection Control


Training for employers:

  • Fire Safety Awareness
  • GDPR
  • Good Employer
  • Health and safety at home
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing
  • Risk Assessments for Ƶ
  • Safeguarding


Training for personal assistants:

  • Bespoke Pre-Employment
  • Dementia awareness
  • Dignity in care
  • Disability awareness
  • Fire Safety Awareness
  • Food Hygiene Safety
  • GDPR
  • Health and safety
  • Medication awareness
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing
  • Moving and Positioning People Safely
  • Person Centred Care
  • Safeguarding
  • Tissue Viability

Disability Positive (Cheshire)


Phone: 01606 331 853

Email: info@disabilitypositive.org

Training will be available in either classroom or online settings.

  • Assisting and moving
  • First Aid
  • Good Employer Training
  • Makaton
  • Manual handling
  • Safeguarding adults


Embrace Wigan and Leigh (Wigan)


Phone: 01942 233323

Email: info@embracewiganandleigh.org.uk

Training will be available via six audio courses. Each audio course will be accompanied by a short knowledge test.


Training for personal assistants:

  • What employing personal assistants is like
  • Creative support
  • What being a PA is like


Individual Employer training:

  • What PAs believe are good employers
  • The do’s and don’ts of recruitment
  • The benefits of having a direct payment


Kaleidoscope Brokerage (Prestwich)


Phone: 0161 804 8178

Email: admin@kaleidoscopebrokerage.org.uk


Starting right (can be delivered one to one or in classroom setting):

  • The role of an employer
  • The benefits of employing a PA
  • Employer obligations and best practice
  • Issuing a statement of role and a contract     
  • PA safer recruitment and retention
  • Managing Safeguarding
  • PA training and monitoring
  • Managing a PA day-to-day
  • Managing conflict and conflict resolution
  • Understanding payroll and the processes


Knowsley Disability Concern


Phone: 0151 480 4090

Email: info@kdc.org.uk


The following training can be delivered face to face in employer’s home:

  • Emergency First Aid at Work
  • Safer Handling of Medication
  • Epilepsy Awareness


Continuing professional development (CPD) certified e-learning:

  • Personal Care
  • Food Hygiene
  • Medication Practice
  • Nutrition and Hygiene
  • Infection Control
  • Autistic Spectrum Conditions


Purple Umbrella


Email: Contact@purpleumbrella.org.uk

Training offer: Signalong Foundation Course 

disAbility Cornwall & Isles of Scilly


Phone: 01736 759500

Email: hello@disabilitycornwall.org.uk

E-learning can be accessed via Social Care TV

  • Basic Life Support
  • Bladder Health, Continence and Catheter Care
  • Dementia – Creating Moments of Joy for People with Dementia
  • Diabetes – Prevention and Support
  • Epilepsy Awareness and Support
  • Health and Safety including Food Safety, travel safety and Allergies
  • Medication Awareness
  • Mental Health Awareness
  • Neurological Conditions: Communication and Swallowing
  • Personal Safety – Lone working and Managing Challenging
  • Personalisation and Person -Centred Support
  • Safeguarding Adults at Risk
  • Safer Moving and Handling


Wiltshire CIL


Phone: 0300 1233 442

Email: info@wiltshirecil.org.uk

  • Autism and Learning Disabilities
  • Care Certificate Introduction
  • Dementia Care
  • Disability Ally
  • First Aid Awareness
  • Health and Safety
  • Moving and Handling Theory
  • Nutrition and Diet
  • Person-Centred Care
  • Safeguarding in Social Care


Prospective PAs

  • What is a PA, advantages, the PA Register, applying for vacancies.
  • Is it for me?
  • Boundaries, communication.
  • Thinking about Dignity and Choice and Values
  • Safeguarding
  • What next?


Employer Information Workshop to understand:

  • payroll – how it works, why it is needed
  • responsibilities to HMRC
  • statutory responsibilities around annual leave, SMP, SSC etc
  • employment law and responsibilities as an employer

Bringing Us Together


Phone: 07908 624549      

Email: Katie@bringingustogether.org.uk


Being the Boss – workshops for individual employers will be delivered over three sessions:

  • Managing teams
  • Recruitment
  • Mental health and wellbeing


Darlington Association on Disability


Phone: 01325 489999

Email: mail@darlingtondisability.org

Classroom training:

  • Autism awareness
  • First Aid
  • Food nutrition and meal times
  • How to be a Good PA
  • Manual Handling
  • Medication Administration
  • How to be a good PA

Online training via IHASCO:

  • Health and safety
  • Infection control
  • Safeguarding

Training for employers:

  • Starting Out – Becoming an employer (Webinar and a face-to-face session)
  • Employers Masterclass (Webinar or distance learning)
  • Recruiting a PA


Disability North


Phone: 0191 284 0480

Email: reception@disabilitynorth.org.uk


Foundation Personal Assistant training – Key Values. A full one-day course covering the following learning:

  • What is Personalisation?
  • The role of a Personal Assistant (PA)
  • Employer responsibilities and PA responsibilities
  • Values and skills of a PA
  • The medical and social models of disability
  • Direct Payments and Social Care, the history and how does it work?
  • The real impact of having a PA
  • The keys to citizenship and person-centred support
  • Inclusion, equality, diversity, and discrimination
  • Health and safety
  • Confidentiality
  • When things are not working and how to have good conversations.
  • Keeping people safe (Safeguarding adults and children)
  • A PA career, how to get started.


Getting the most from your Personal Assistant. This one-day course covers

  • Building a positive working relationship
  • Ensuring your PA has the right values for your role
  • Your responsibilities as an employer
  • The importance of a good induction
  • Having better conversations
  • Implementing good supervision
  • Support for your PA


Disability Sheffield Centre for Independent Living Ltd


Phone: 0114 253 6750

Email: info@disabilitysheffield.org.uk


  • Medication awareness
  • Emergency first aid at work
  • Food safety
  • Moving and handling people and objects
  • Mental health insight
  • Autism insight
  • Developing digital, data and IT skills


Leeds Centre for Integrated Living


Phone: 0113 231 1125

How to manage your own Personal Assistants: delivered by an individual employer and will explore opportunities to share personal experiences and consider how good recruitment approaches can help in ‘real-life’ situations between PA employers and their PAs.



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Ƶ has awarded funding to 22 organisations to deliver training aimed at personal assistants and their employers between now and the end of March 2024.


Support for individual employers and PAs

Our dedicated webpages for individual employers and personal assistants bring together useful information from lots of different places to help with employing your own support.

Individual Employer Funding

Individual employers can apply for funding to train themselves and their personal assistants (PAs). Find out more.


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