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This is Caring: the hidden lives of carers

27 August 2015

To mark our 50th Anniversary, we have worked with renowned documentary photographer Chris Steele-Perkins to compile This is Caring – a series of photos to capture caring relationships and to give insight into the daily lives of carers.

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Ten Carers UK members have been photographed by Chris, and four of them – Caryl, Dawn, Jocelyn and Pippa – were featured in a Guardian article

This is Caring opens up the practical and emotional reality of looking after someone. The highs of being there for our family or friends, expressing our love and helping them get the most out of life. The lows of feeling isolated and unsupported, unable to have a life of our own outside of caring.

The project celebrates the relationship between carers and those we care for, showing the everyday rhythm of caring while also conveying the extraordinary struggles – with exhaustion, with bureaucracy, with finances – that lie just beneath the surface.

In addition to sharing portraits and stories of carers, the Guardian article also underlined the need for carers to receive more support, particularly in the face of budget cuts. Pippa said:

"As carers, we've been through the system and know what works and what doesn't work. This is so much red tape that we often don't get access to the support we need as carers."

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Carers UK Chief Executive Heléna Herklots said: 

“This pressure on families is unsustainable; carers cannot continue to pick up the pieces of a care system in crisis. Greater investment is urgently needed if our ageing population is going to have the support and care we all want to see for ourselves and for our families in the future.”

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