An Individual Service Fund (ISF) is a mechanism for controlling an individual budget within an organisation. It is restricted funding and can be spent flexibly to achieve the best possible outcomes for the person.
Organisations often found that funding mechanisms were unduly restricting - specifying how funding was to be used and removing discretion and flexibility from service providers. Individual Service Funds were developed at Inclusion Glasgow in 1996 and were designed to overcome this problem and to put in place an individual funding mechanism that could be used with the necessary flexibility to provide personalised support to people with complex needs. It is also used by organisations such as Partners for Inclusion and C-Change for Inclusion.
An Individual Service Fund (ISF) is a restricted fund; money is held by the service provider and used to develop an outcomes-focused support solution.
It is legitimate to charge some organisational costs against the budget, but these must be subject to clear and agreed rules:
- Service Coordinator - this person oversees the fund and the design of the individual service
- Management - a fixed share is set aside for management and organisational costs
- Insurance - individuals may pay into a shared fund to be used in emergencies
The ISF model is particularly useful for people who don't want the bother of managing a direct payment but who want flexible and personalised support.
The publisher is the Centre for Welfare Reform.
Individual Service Fund © Simon Duffy 2010.
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A report describing how to provide support to people with the most complex needs or challenging behaviour drawing on the work of Partners for Inclusion.
How one family used an Individual Service Fund (ISF) to improve care and support for their boys with complex needs.
An Individual Service Fund is a useful way in which resources can be used flexibly to achieve personalised support.
Researchers Animate discover that Individual Service Funds (ISFs) and Inclusion have had a positive impact on people's lives.