Support for carers
Is there someone who cannot manage without your help? Perhaps an elderly relative, a disabled child or adult, someone with drug or alcohol problems, someone with mental health difficulties or someone with a long-term health issue? If so, you are a Carer and there is help available.
Most of the help received by people in society who need support comes from friends or relatives acting as carers. A substantial number of these are children and young people. The help that Carers provide is unpaid and therefore does not include an individual who provides care by virtue of a contract of employment or as a volunteer for an Agency.
Individuals can often find themselves in a caring role with little preparation. Finding the right information and support to provide this invaluable role is where we can help.
How can we help?
Social Care departments have a duty to inform regular and substantial Carers of their right to a Carers Support Needs Assessment and to provide that assessment if requested.
If you are a Carer and the person you care for is not known to us, you still have the right to request an assessment. A Carers Support Needs Assessment will enable us to understand your situation and establish what is important to you.
There is no legal definition of what regular and substantial means. Social Care has been given guidance by the Department of Health that it depends on your particular circumstances, the type of care you deliver, and the effect it has on your life. It is not just a question of how many hours a week you spend looking after someone but also the overall impact on your life.
A Carer’s Support Needs Assessment is offered in recognition of the invaluable contribution that you are making and involves a face to face meeting with a Social Care representative. The person carrying out the assessment will discuss with you your caring role and listen to what’s important to you, apart from caring, to understand what support you may need. This will provide you with the opportunity to speak openly about your role and your wishes and aspirations. The outcome of a Carers Support Needs Assessment could include any of these examples (this list is not exhaustive):
- A dedicated support worker
- Additional support for the person being cared for
- Emotional and practical support
- Signposting to relevant services and carer groups
- Provision of advice and information
- Access to a Carers Emergency Card
- Possible access to a Carers Flexible Support Grant
- Receive a Carers Information pack and regular newsletter
After you have requested a Carers Support Needs Assessment we will contact you to arrange a suitable time to visit you or arrange a meeting so that we can discuss your situation with you (Sometimes Carers prefer to discuss their caring role in private and separate from the person being cared for). The purpose of the visit is to listen to you.
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