Returning to work after caring

For anyone who is bereaved or no longer providing care.
Without overstaying my welcome on this thread , where would many be that have fallen through that safety net without the likes of Trussells around ?

Close to 100,000 of our fellow carers already know the answer to that one ....
Quite right Chris - I've had the need to approach a local food bank myself since leaving my caring role... that is a sad fact. :roll: I would so much like to be able to bring in change for our particular group. :dry:
You are the very first poster to admit that ... it takes courage and other readers should applaud that ... you , I fear , won't be the last.

Type in FOOD BANKS at the top , and no results will be shown ... only acknowledgement of their existence let alone their role in aiding carers can be found under the thread I started.

Why is that ... I wonder ?

Yes .... there is a lot for carers to " Celebrate " during carers week.

Perhaps my local food bank will put up a sign ... " Welcome to Carers Week " ... gravy to go with your bread , as a show of solidarity for the low millions of carers near / at / below the official poverty line ?

Even better , some snappers around for some REAL , honest publicity ?

ENOUGH ... back to the original thread !
A very interesting article from 2015 , The Conversation web site : ... -end-46973

Why carers are disadvantaged even when their responsibilities end

The whole article is definately worth a couple of minutes of any reader's time.

A snippet :

Life after caring

In contrast to the attention carers receive, the 2.1m carers who cease active caring each year are largely off the radar of services, policy and research.

Studies that have been carried out suggest that post-caring life is characterised by a number of “legacies of caring”.

One of these legacies is significant financial hardship; costs arising from care-related expenses (additional laundry and heating, transport, paying for care) are known to deplete carers’ savings and increase their levels of debt.

That carers are often unable to care and undertake paid work, is a further cause of income reduction post-caring.

Skills and networks lost during caring can also damage prospects of returning to jobs or embarking on new careers afterwards – in turn jeopardising opportunities to address financial losses.

Time out of the workforce means being unable to make pension contributions which increases the risk of financial hardship after retirement.

Former carers’ financial situations are also often worsened by the loss of carer-related benefits that cease once “active” caring ends.

Other legacies of caring include poor physical and psychological health; there is no evidence that caring-related health and well-being problems improve once caring is over.

Former carers can experience significant distress once they no longer have caring responsibilities, especially in connection to depression – exacerbated by the fact that dwindling social networks while caring leave carers socially isolated.

In some cases, new health problems start after caring ends – these relate particularly to sleep, exercise, eating, and alcohol consumption

How many of us former carers can relate to the above ?

One comment worthy of inclusion :

I gave up my career to care for my eldest daughter when she was diagnosed with an autism spectrum condition aged 9.

She is now 22 and I am, to all intents and purposes, homeless, have no savings, no pension and cannot get into a decent role/new career, despite having studied for an OU degree whilst caring as my 6 year gap in employment goes against me every time.

I even founded and ran 2 charities whilst caring, and can’t get a job above administrator level.

My ex-husband meanwhile is retired on a huge pension and living on the farm he bought in New Zealand as he never got involved in caring for our daughter at all, in fact wouldn’t even acknowledge she was ‘disabled’.

This article is so very true - I know so many other women my age who have cared for disabled children, and are now being hit again with taking on responsibility for elderly parents, or grandparents.

The support received from the government/statutory services is almost non-existent and what there is is being cut on a seemingly weekly basis.

The long-term effects of the stress, exhaustion and lack of self-care is going to be a ticking time-bomb for the future, especially those women who don’t have any children or whose children are not able to become carers themselves due to their own disabilities.

Thank you for acknowledging this (as far as I know) previously unacknowledged demographic.
Thank you for your last post Chris... excellent article highlighting the plight of former carers.

After having formally written to my Member of Parliament about the matter, the only response I have had is that all MPs are now on vacation till after the General Election!!! Vacation?!?!... question is is there anyone in parliament at all?... an image of Government being asleep at the wheel comes to mind.
As it stands , many Issues are in limbo.

The House is virtually out of bounds until the autumn , with new runners and riders to be announced.

The question of how members issues are being handled by our own supporting organisation has arisen ... see the Governance thread ... Members Corner section.

In all , I haven't seen so much up in the air since 2009 ... uncertainty / disillusionment at every turn.

One arm of Carers UK asking for manifesto issues whereas one only has to look through the forums and the Campaigns Section.

When completed , that arm's manifesto would look entirely different to the back of a cigarette packet one appearing in the top section of this forum ... did Gavin MacGregor drop back in for a cup of coffee ?

Even who does what unclear.

Seems to be an underlying feeling of ... unless one does it him / herself , nothing will get done ?
Seems like the initial analogy of a carer who has ceased caring , and a prisoner just released from prison is becoming more apt ?

Ex-prisoners lack support, says probation head.

Managers involved say the system doesn't provide firms with enough incentives to tackle re-offending.

Mr Spurr addressed the issue at the annual conference of the Prison Governors Association near Derby, where one governor told him that 200 prisoners had been freed from the jail he runs with "next to nil" resettlement provision.

Mr Spurr responded: "CRCs are not working as we would have wanted them to work," adding that for many there was only a "basic resettlement service" available for offenders.

"Basic signposting is what's going on in a lot of places," he admitted.

I now withdraw my notion that released prisoner get more help to resettle than carers ... with the provision to reintroduce said notion if assistance to prisoners is now treated as a priority.

Support for both now on par with each other ... more chance for support to improve for ex prisoners ?
Has anyone else noticed the statistics for this thread? 45 replies but 3,774 views.

No doubt about the importance of this topic to all of us then. I wonder if this statistic could be used to further our cause in some way?
If statstics were anything to go by , a whole team within Carers UK would be working on the TRAVEL issue.

Now passed 10,000 and I have been treading water in progressing it ever since the last General Election was announced.

Foodbanks ... 8.425 ... and still no guidance apart from what's on that thread.

We know that over a million had to resort to foodbanks in the last callender year. How many carers amongst that number ? If one surfed into either supporting organisation , what would they find ? What message does that send to them ???

Even more apt , not included as a section / question on the Carers UK annual survey !

21 Hour Rule ... 3,925 ... and we still await to see if the NUS are willing to collaborate with us / me ?

Too " Hot " for our supporting organisations.

" We're lobbying " ... said our CEO in a previous visit onto this forum in response to the TRAVEL Issue.

Amanda's petition ( 3,328 as I type ) is a side show but very handy to shoe horn in as it expands the numbers aware of the Issue.
As a side issue but linked to the last posting .... privatization of public services yet again : ... ice-system
LABOUR will boot failing private firms out of our probation system and return the rehabilitation of prisoners to public hands, shadow justice secretary Richard Burgon pledged yesterday.

Following the Labour Party’s manifesto commitment to review the role of private Community Rehabilitation Companies (CRCs), Mr Burgon confirmed that it would restore probation to the “high quality service it once was.”

Let's hope the private sector does not encroach anymore in CarerLand ... at least we still have a focal point when something goes wrong , usually the LA which is governed by guidelines ... a wafer thin comfort for most ?

An old report from the National Elf Service web site ... November 2014 ... which readers of this thread will find extremly interesting in contrast to some " Official " sites out there : ... er-carers/

Carers policy and practice: What about ‘former carers’ ?

It pulls no punches and is written in plain English !

Another site worth mentioning ..... The Open University : Former Carers :

The Former Carers Study.

Exploring the experiences of former carers in the UK.

A little ancient ... 2014 / 2015 but full of interesting snippets should any reader want to explore further.

Probably a silly question to the readers of 2017 ?

Anyone explored the possibility of a " Carers Probation Officer " ... detailed earlier in this thread ... since first muted ?

I don't think I need a pen to record the answer to that one ?

There are many issues that CAN be tackled at local manor level ... just needs a bit of time and , more importantly , the Will to finally say " Enough is enough ! "

Things don't change overnight ... and will never do so unless someone somewhere makes the first move.

Little acorns ?

In the mid 60s , 3 / 4 people met around a coffee table expressing views on a recent BBC drama ... Cathy Come Home.

50+ years later , just look at SHELTER !

In 1996 Paddy and Carol Henderson met Baby Boris, a street baby living at Central Railway station with his 14-year-old mother. Paddy and Carol were working for a UN feeding programme at the time.

21 years later ... 2017 ... Trussells ... the largest food bank provider in the UK.

Donate a can of food , the end user receives a can of food ... not half empty after " Expenses " have been deducted.

In 1971, a small group of activists set sail to the Amchitka island off Alaska to try and stop a US nuclear weapons test. The money for the mission was raised with a concert, their old fishing boat was called “ The Greenpeace ”.

Not exactly a " Sea cruise " many would select ... freezing conditions / motor powered rubber dingy ... playing dodge the exploding harpoon ... hoping that the captain of that steel mountain doesn't lose patience and steer an intercept course ... ???

It can be done ....