A Family Carer is someone of any age whose life is restricted because they are looking after another person who cannot manage without help because of illness, age related frailty, mental health need, substance misuse or disability. Family Carers are not paid and do not always live with the person they care for. They may be caring for a friend, neighbour or relative.
Most Family Carers would not recognise themselves as a Family Carer. They consider themselves as people trying to cope as best they can while helping to look after, for example, an elderly relative who has developed Alzheimer's, a partner with Multiple Sclerosis or a young child born with cerebral palsy.
Family Carers may even be juggling paid work with their unpaid caring responsibilities at home. The term Family Carer should not be confused with the term ‘carer’ who provides a service and receives payment for looking after someone.