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Social work for children with disabilities

Social workers work with children and families to help them find solutions to challenges.

They may see you and your family at home or in a children’s disability network team centre.

What a social worker does

Social workers organise group sessions for parents of children with disabilities. This gives parents a chance to meet each other and share their experiences.

Social workers will also see you on your own. This is so you are free to talk.

Social workers may also work directly with children and young people, both individually and in groups.

A social worker may be able to help by giving you:

  • space to think about the emotional impact of your child's diagnosis or extra needs
  • opportunities to discuss how your child’s disability affects other family members
  • training and support to develop the skills needed to parent a child with additional needs
  • help to find resources in the community that can help your child and family
  • help with applications for benefits and services
  • opportunities to connect with other families of children with disabilities and support groups in the community
  • support when you're facing other challenges - problems with health, relationships or money

Social workers can also help you with referrals to other services. They work with the other members of the Children's Disability Network Team (CDNT).

Learn more about social work from the Irish Association of Social Workers -

Referrals to a social worker in the CDNT

Your GP can refer your child to the CDNT or you can make a referral yourself.

Make a referral to the CDNT

You can't refer to a specific health professional. The team will decide which service suits your child best.

Page last reviewed: 1 April 2023
Next review due: 1 April 2026