About us

Find out more about our organisation: our vision, our approach, our history, our Board and staff team.

Self Directed Support Scotland

Our vision, mission & values

Our Vision is:

A Scotland where quality Self-directed Support is available to all as a route to Independent Living.

Our Mission is:

  • to work collaboratively to incorporate local Independent Support in every aspect of social care design and delivery
  • to ensure the needs and views of people accessing social care support and their support networks are valued and represented.

Our Values are:

  • independence
  • diversity
  • equality
  • peer support
  • collective voice
  • collaboration
  • transparency.

Our approach

We work to promote the values and principles of Self-directed Support, including choice, control and flexibility, in all aspects of social care support.

We do this by working collaboratively across the social care sector: with Scottish Government, Local Authorities, third sector organisations and our members, to improve Self-directed Support implementation in Scotland.

As a membership organisation, we bring together those who share our vision and values, to amplify our collective voice around social care support issues.

As a Disabled People’s Organisation (an organisation where at least 51% of the Board are either disabled people or/and people who are eligible for social care support), we stand up for the rights of disabled people and people who need support.

And we champion local Independent SDS Support Organisations across Scotland, who help thousands of people every year access and manage the support they need to live a good life.

Find out more out what we do here: Our Work

Our history

Prior to Self-directed Support being enacted in law in Scotland in 2013, there had been a growing movement campaigning for people to be able to have more choice and control over their social care support.

From the late 1990s, people in Scotland could access Direct Payments – cash from their Local Authority paid directly to them, enabling them to decide which support would best meet their needs and to buy this support directly. The model was expanded and developed further into the 2000s, and organisations helping people to access and manage Direct Payments were soon established across the country.

Self-directed Support Scotland arose out of this movement, starting life in the mid-2000s as the Scottish Consortium of Direct Payment Support Organisations (SCDPSO). We became a fully constituted charity in 2008, and secured funding from Scottish Government to support existing and developing Direct Payment management organisations.

Over the years, our work has grown, although we still retain the same guiding mission to support and promote organisations who help people access and manage their social care support. Many of our original members have grown and evolved over the years and now provide a vast range of services. Many still retain a primary focus on supporting people to manage Direct Payments (SDS Option 1).

Our work has grown too, especially since the formal legislation enshrining Self-directed Support as the default approach to organising social care in Scotland came into force in 2014. As well as developing and promoting organisations who help people navigate SDS, we also develop resources, commission research and work with partners across the sector to improve the implementation of the law, playing a pivotal role in shaping national policy around social care support in Scotland.

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Learn more about our Board of Trustees

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Staff team

Learn more about our staff team

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View our Annual Reports and Articles of Association

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