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Carers Action Plan

The Carers Action Plan was launched on Tuesday 5 June, designed to deliver activity for carers across Government over the next two years ahead of the Green Paper on social care, due to be published this summer.

Carers UK has welcomed the Carers Action Plan and its positive short term measures to support carers but expressing disappointment that it lacks action to improve financial support.

Carers UK has submitted a great deal of evidence since the idea for a Carers Strategy was first announced by the Secretary of State for Health on 1 July 2015.

Read our press statement

Read the Government’s Carers Action Plan

Read the Government’s response to the evidence from carers

Download the PDF of our Q&A about the Carers Action Plan and its development

The Carers Action Plan is designed to deliver activity for carers across Government over the next two years ahead of the Green Paper on social care, due to be published this summer. The Action Plan is largely designed for carers in England, although there are measures that might impact positively on carers in other nations. Thousands of carers shared their experience to inform the development of this Action Plan, reflecting the strength of feeling among carers that much more support is needed.

Community Solutions

While many carers do encounter loneliness, there are many organisations and groups out there that offer a lot of support and chances for carers to socialise more when they can.

Here we highlight some of the best.

Employers for Carers

1 in 9 people in the workforce are caring for loved ones while juggling their work. Employers for Carers encourages carer-recognition in the workforce with e-learning modules and more.

FIND OUT MORE


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Portsmouth Carer's breaks cookery sessions

Portsmouth Council now offers cookery classes for carers. For many carers food choices are an afterthought and time spent socialising has to be meticulously planned and justified.

The cookery sessions offer the chance to learn new skills with a quality break from their caring role.

READ MORE 


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Neath Port Talbot's Connecting Carers Project

To lessen the impact of isolation and loneliness among carers Neath Port Talbot's Carers' Service now offer a sitting service and a carer connector.

The Sitting Service provides peace of mind to carers with a volunteer put in place to keep the cared for company while the carer is able to "have a life of their own" and a break form their caring role.

The Carer Connector works one-to-one with carers to support them in accessing anything and everything in their own community. This could be training, volunteering, leisure activities, or hobbies.

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Carers Time Bank in Central London

For lonely carers, a dearth of time is one of the biggest reasons for losing touch with friends and family or struggling to maintain hobbies and interests. The time bank can help carers socialise through volunteering for as few or as many hours as they can, getting the time back when they want to.

Currently, over 114 carers volunteer as part of the scheme for as few or as many hours as they want, at a time that suits their needs. For every hour ‘donated’, carers can earn a time credit that can be used to claim back a session from another member.

READ MORE 


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Carer Support Groups Northern Ireland

Carers Northern Ireland facilitates a number of Carers Support Groups in the Northern Health and Social Care Trust.

When you're looking after someone it can often feel like you're on your own. Joining a local support group can help to connect you with people who know what you're going through.

READ MORE 


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Combatting loneliness in the workplace - TfL

Transport for London’s Carers Staff Network is helping to reduce isolation and loneliness by recognising the challenges that carers face.

“Our Carers Staff Network Group provides a forum for employees to meet fellow carers at TfL and it gives them the opportunity to talk to each other, be supported and share advice.

"With many carers feeling isolated, we’ve found that the group has a huge impact on those who are part of it because they get the chance to meet other people who understand what they are going through. It makes them feel less alone.”

READ MORE 


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Need a break

One in four carers in our 2017 State of Caring Report told us they hadn't had a day off caring in more than five years.

We feel it's time to do something about carers' access to funding and services for breaks.

What can we do?

More and more of us are stepping in to provide care and support to loved ones and doing so for more hours every week. Without access to breaks, carers can quickly reach breaking point, unable to look after our own health, keep up relationships with friends and family or have the time we need to ourselves. 

4 in 10 (40%) carers responding to our State of Caring survey have not had a break in over a year. Carers who had not had a break in a year or more reported a deterioration in their health, both mentally (73%) and physically (65%). 

They told us that they aren’t accessing breaks because of:

  • The cost of paying for a break
  • Not being able to find appropriate support on offer
  • The unwillingness of the people we care for to accept support from others
  • Lack of trust in the quality of care available.

Increasing funding for carers’ breaks is a key part of the change needed to support people to care without putting their own lives on hold. This must be part of addressing the wider crisis in funding of social care that has led to support being cut for many and growing levels of unmet care and support needs.

Given the enormous value of unpaid care provided by the UK’s 6.5 million carers, worth £132 billion each year – having some time away from caring to spend time with a partner, get to a medical appointment or just get a full night’s sleep surely isn’t too much to ask.


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Together we're a supportive community and a movement for change.

How you can help

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With your help we can reach more carers with timely support and advice.

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We will keep campaigning until every carer gets proper recognition and support.

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