As a carer or former carer you will have experience and skills that are invaluable. Much of Carers UK's work involves our members. Here are a few examples of ways we are using volunteers to make a difference.
1. Mentor another carer : Timebank mentoring
Carers Together is volunteering project, funded by the Big Lottery Fund and delivered by TimeBank and Carers UK. It aims to offer carers the support of a mentor - someone who knows what they are going through and can listen and support them.
Carers Together has two services:
- An online mentoring service, available to anyone in England with access to the internet
- A face to face mentoring service for those in the Birmingham area
To volunteer to be a mentor you don’t need any special skills – time, patience and commitment are most important. Just listening to your mentee and supporting them will help build their self-esteem, confidence and emotional resilience. As a mentor or online volunteer you’ll be making a really positive contribution to carers’ lives, with the opportunity to develop your own skills and expertise which could lead to other opportunities including work and training. Carers Together offers full training and both volunteers and carers are supported throughout by dedicated, expert staff.
2. Tell your story : Press and Media case studies
Despite caring being commonplace, public understanding of “carers” as an issue is low. Our media work aims to improve recognition of caring and Carers UK. We've had appearances on TV and radio and regular features in newspapers. We have been very sucessful at doing that because of amazing voluneters who are prepared to tell their stories.
Interested in volunteering to help with our media work?
3. Become an ambassador: GP ambassadors
The 'Supporting Carers in General Practice programme' was set up in October 2011 and includes four programme partners (Carers UK, Carers Trust, the Royal College of GPs and the Queen’s Nursing Institute). Carers UK has recruited a team of 25 volunteer 'Carer Ambassadors' who are making valuable contributions to their local communities across England, drawing on their caring, work and volunteering experience to complement and contribute to local activities aimed at improving services for other carers.