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Carers Week 11 - 17 June

User AvatarPosted by Amanda Crawford at 12/06/2018 10:57:55

Around 6.5 million people in the UK are carers, looking after a parent, partner, child or friend.  A carer is someone who provides unpaid care and support to a family member or friend who has a disability, illness, mental health problem or who needs extra help as they grow older. 

Carers Week is about coming together to build communities that support the health and wellbeing of carers.

For most people, caring for a family member or friend is something they are very happy to do. However, it is all too easy to forget about your own health and wellbeing. It is important to know what help is available and getting the right support can enable you to carry on caring for as long as you wish and are able to.

Getting support 
Contact your local carers’ organisation for information, advice and guidance, practical help with forms and claiming benefit entitlements, someone to talk to in confidence, the chance to link up with other carers in support and activity groups, regular newsletters, free ‘Caring with Confidence’ courses, and much more. On behalf of Kent County Council, they provide statutory Carers’ Assessments which look at what support you need in your caring role. They can also provide you with a free Kent Carer’s Emergency Card so the person you care for will be looked after if you are taken ill or involved in an accident. 

Carers’ Support:
Ashford, Folkestone and Hythe, Swale council areas: 01233 664393 
Canterbury, Dover, Thanet council areas: 01304 364637

Taking a break
Crossroads Care East Kent offers carers a regular, free, short break of a few hours by providing support to the person you care for. They also have a health appointment service which looks after the person you care for so you can attend your own health appointments.  
Crossroads Care East Kent: 01227 742030 enquiries@crossroadskent.org 

Pilgrims Hospices provide support to carers and families of people in their last year of life, as well as the patients themselves.  
Pilgrims Hospices: 01233 504133 eastkent@pilgrimshospices.org 

Kent Carers Matter is a campaign to raise awareness of what carers do, and give them a voice and access to support.  
For more information, visit www.kentcarersmatter.co.uk 

Looking after yourself
Carers are at risk of depression, but help is available. If you feel too worn out or ill to go on, or the person you’re looking after needs more specialist attention than you can give, talk to your GP or social worker. They will be able to discuss options with you. 

You can also access talking therapies in your area by visiting Live Well Kent or Health Help Now.