Carers Week is being marked in Liverpool on Thursday 14 June with a special advice and support event.
The theme for 2018 is ‘Healthy and Connected’, recognising that caring for a loved one can be challenging and isolating and impact on their own health.
It is taking place in Williamson Square from 10:30am – 3:30pm, in partnership with Local Solutions, with dozens of organisations on hand to give information about the support available for the city’s estimated 50,000 carers.
Carers of all ages will be participating in the formal opening of the event by sharing their experiences, and a video made by young carers to raise awareness in schools of the issues they experience will also be shown.
Whilst caring can be a rewarding experience, statistics show that:
• 3 in 5 carers have a long term health condition, compared with half of non-carers
• 40% of young adult carers aged 18-24 have a long term health condition, compared with 29% of non-carers in the same age group
• Half of carers say their mental health has got worse as a result of caring
• 8 out of 10 people feel more stressed because of their caring role
• 7 out of 10 say caring has made them feel more anxious
• 54% of carers also reported that they have reduced the amount of exercise they take because of caring while 45% reported that they have found it difficult to maintain a balanced diet
• 69% said they find it difficult to get a good night’s sleep because of their caring role
Councillor Paul Brant, Cabinet member for adult services and health, said: “Many people don’t even realise that they are classed as carers and could well be missing out on vital benefits and other types of support such as respite breaks.
“Although the council is having to make tough choices due to reductions in national spending, we are committed to providing support to the most vulnerable.
“This is why we are encouraging anyone who cares for a family member or friend to come along and find out what support is on offer and see if they are eligible for a carer’s assessment. This gives them the chance to talk about how caring affects them and to find out about what support they can get and the rights they have.”
The number of carers in receipt of direct support in Liverpool is around 1,800 – but is still less than four percent of the total number.
Once a carer has been assessed and are identified as being eligible, they receive a support plan, tailored information and advice. This can include access to:
• The Carers Health and Wellbeing Service delivered by Local Solutions – which offers a variety of activities for carers in the community with a range of support that reduces the negative impact of caring on them and promotes their health and wellbeing.
• The Carers Advocacy Service offered by The Brain Charity – free, independent, professional advocacy service for all carers
• There is also access to assessment and support for carers aged 25 and under delivered by Barnardo’s Action with Young Carers