Vici Richardson

Direct Payments Advisor

I have worked for Disability North for the last 7 years, previous to that I worked as a Campaigns and Parent Advocacy Manager.  I provide advice and support for people receiving a Personal Budget who have chosen to take that as a Direct Payment. The advice and support can relate to employing Personal Assistants, contracting with providers or using the payment for activities. I have a Direct Payment for my son and use that to employ a Personal Assistant and so have first-hand experience of the complexities that families sometimes face.

I look at the budgets given and advise on what people can use these for, how much they can pay a PA, hours of support they can afford.  I support my clients to recruit good quality Personal Assistants, by helping them write a job advert and job description and then support them through the whole recruitment process, including support at interviews. Once a Personal Assistant has been recruited I ensure all checks are in place such as DBS and references and provide ongoing support around managing their employee.  Employing a personal assistant can be a daunting prospect and I aim to make that as straightforward and painless as possible.

Something not many people know about me:
I am a director of Wansbeck Gymnastics and Trampolining Club and passed my level pre school gymnastics course recently.