DO YOU LOOK AFTER SOMEONE WHO COULD NOT MANAGE WITHOUT YOU?
IF SO PLEASE READ ON
If you provide unpaid help and support to a relative, friend or neighbour who could not manage without your help because of physical or mental ill health, physical or learning disabilities, frailty or addiction to alcohol or drugs then you are almost certainly a carer!
Many people don’t think of themselves as carers; looking after husband, wife, partner, mother, father, grandparent, brother, sister, child or close friend becomes part of life. Caring tends to happen to you and you just get on with it. Anyone can become a carer. If you travel some distance to look after someone or you are trying to balance your caring role with working, you may be a carer; you don’t have to live with the person cared for to be a carer.
Many children and young people under the age of 18 find that their lives are restricted because of the need to take some responsibility for looking after a parent, brother or sister. Parents may be carers of a disabled child if they provide regular and substantial care beyond what is expected for a similarly aged child.
Explicitly excluded from the definition of the word carer, are people who are employed to provide care such as home care staff or nursing staff.
Why Do Carers Need Support?
- Many carers juggle work or education with caring
- Many carers don’t find out what help is available to them until they reach a crisis
- Being able to take a break from caring is essential; form many carers a regular break makes it possible to continue caring
- Carers often give up work to care with all the financial consequences that follow
- Many carers develop their own health problems as a result of caring
What Help is Available to Carers?
Carers have a right in law to an assessment of their needs as carers from Health and Social Care services. The principal areas covered by the assessment include practical and financial support, health, social and emotional needs.
The telephone number to request an assessment is Carersline on 0117 9652200
For independent advice on carers assessments or other carer support, you can contact the Carers Support Centre: Tel 0117 965 2200, online: www.carerssupportcentre.org.uk/contact