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Posts Tagged ‘carers support’

1 in 5 carers have left, or had to turn down, a job because of caring responsibilities.

Do you need some extra support to help you to combine paid work with caring and help reduce financial hardship?

Extra support announced today includes:

  • Ensuring carers have access to appropriate employment programmes – including one-to-one work focused support for carers
  • Funding for replacement care for participation in approved activities (including employment training)
  • A Care Partnership Manager in every Jobcentre Plus district
  • Specialist training for advisers who work with carers

This is all part of the short-term aims of the Carers Strategy.

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St Helens Carers Centre now has a Breaks Officer who can help you towards getting a carers break payment. The amount of funding is dependent on your caring role and not on your financial situation – it is NOT means tested.

The fund can be used for any break – as long as it gives you a break from your normal day to day caring role.

The fund comes from the PCT who were allocated the money. Gordon Brown has said about this fund:

‘We have set aside the money; I want to see it spent. It is a necessary means by which we can support the energy of carers, who need time off, and therefore need respite care to be available.’

We have asked the PCT to confirm the amount available for carers in St Helens – and for a breakdown of proportions spent on people supporting someone with mental health needs. We’d also like to know how carers were involved in the decisions on how to allocate the money.

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SCIE have launched a new briefing highlighting the implications of personalised care for carers. The briefing is published by SCIE in conjunction with Carers UK; it is the latest in a series of short, “At a glance” briefings about personalisation.

Their key messages are:

Personalisation for carers means:

  • tailoring support to people’s individual needs and being part of the discussion about support for yourself and support for the person you are looking after
  • not having to take on all the responsibility and all the managing of care and support – the local authority should ensure that you are sufficiently supported
  • recognising and supporting carers in their role, while enabling them to maintain a life beyond their caring responsibilities – you should have your own needs assessed and have choices about your own support
  • ensuring that people have access to information and advice to make good decisions about their care and support
  • ensuring all citizens have access to universal community services and resources such as health, transport and leisure
  • making services more flexible so you can agree outcomes and find solutions that are right for your situation
  • if needs change over time, personalisation should enable you and the person you are looking after to change the way you are supported.

There are plenty of examples in the briefing – though none that sound specifically about mental ill health.

The briefing is available on SCIE’s website.

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Caring with Confidence is a free programme which aims to improve carers’ lives and the lives of the people they support.

Many carers have been very cynical about it. When carers already have busy lives, and are already coping with a lot, why should they be expected to learn more? What good can it do?

But having seen one group go through the whole course, I can definitely say that its worth making time to attend the sessions. Its always good to speak to others in a similar position. It makes you feel less alone and that you’re not the only one wondering if you’re doing it right.

The group sessions are built around learning from each other. Everyone learnt something, but also everyone taught each other something.

And they were fun and a chance to have a laugh! (more…)

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Carers UK’s Advice and Information Manager, Jean French, will answer questions on carers benefits on Radio 4 Money Box Live 3pm today

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I haven’t had a chance to call it yet – but this is the new carers helpline as described in the National Strategy. (more…)

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