Before George Osborne unveils his Spending Review Carers Trust has one simple question to put to the Chancellor: will you help ensure unpaid carers get the support they need?
We now have legislation in place that would, if properly funded, make a genuine difference to the lives of carers across England. None of these improvements will become a reality without investment, however. It’s like giving a child a new toy for Christmas but without the batteries that will make it work. Continue reading
Young adult carers are pretty fluent at talking about mental health. They refer to it in many ways when they talk about managing the different aspects of their life and supporting the person they care for. The language that they use is rich in emotions, concern and words such as stress, anxiety, depression, relief, isolation and connection. In discussions about campaigning and changing the support available for them and their families, my impression has been that the concept of mental health is a really important part of how they explain what needs to change. Continue reading
Alongside my colleagues in England and Wales, I’ve been attending party conferences in order to speak to politicians and policy makers about carers and how they can support them. I am writing this on a very crowded train home from Aberdeen, where the Scottish National Party have been meeting, and over the past couple of days I have been to some really interesting discussions on human rights, health and care, and the future of charities. Continue reading
The Care Act, which came into force this April, offers an opportunity to transform the support given to unpaid carers.
By making councils responsible for providing the services carers need to prevent their own health being hit by the impact of their caring role, the Act takes us away from focusing solely on giving carers support when they reach “crisis” to an approach which will protect their wellbeing.
Carers Trust has been concerned to ensure that this opportunity is not missed. Continue reading
For many unpaid carers, making regular trips to the local hospital is just a routine part of their week – like getting in the shopping or paying the bills. It’s what they have to do to make sure the person they care for is getting the treatment and support they need.
We don’t think anyone who provides such essential care should have to pay for doing so.
Yet, that’s the reality for millions of carers up and down the country who face having to pay to park every time they take their friend or family member to hospital. It’s leaving some carers having to fork out up to £500 a week. When you’re already feeling the emotional stress of having to make regular trips to hospital, worrying about whether you’re going to be to afford to park is the last thing you need. Continue reading
I talk about mental health very openly, I encourage others to do so too. I strongly believe that accessing help and being provided with a range of support for mental ill health has clear benefits for those struggling. No one should talk about getting help, support and medication for mental ill health as a negative, as a weakness. We’d never tell someone with cancer to pull their socks up and get over it.
The world is moving towards a better place for mental health (we’re not there yet) but I think we’re moving in the right direction. But, just like any journey we need the right vehicle, tools and supplies to get us to where we’re going safely. Continue reading
Over the next two weeks, representatives from Carers Trust will be heading to the Labour and Conservative Party Conferences to meet with MPs and tell them what they can do to support carers.
But it won’t be just us putting the case to politicians. You’ll be there with us too.
Because, in the last month we’ve been asking Carers Trust supporters to send us a message that we can pass on to politicians. Continue reading
From time to time, every carer needs support to help them look after the person they are caring for.
Sometimes that will mean getting equipment installed in their home so that they can meet the needs of the person they support. Other times it might mean calling in home help so that they can keep up with their housework.
The importance of these services cannot be overstated. They mean that carers can provide the best support possible to their friend or family member whilst maintaining their own health. Continue reading