The Nationwide Network of 144 Carers' Centres work to reach carers and develop services for carers across the country.
Carers' Centres are independent charities that deliver a wide range of local support services to meet the needs of carers in their own communities. All Carers' Centres provide, either by telephone, drop-in or outreach surgeries, the following core services:
- Information and advice - about all issues affecting carers, including benefits, breaks, respite and support services, carer assessment procedures, aids and adaptations
- Emotional support - by providing opportunities for carers to talk through their concerns, both individually and in group sessions, with staff, trained volunteers and other carers who understand their situation, thus helping to alleviate isolation and stress.
- Community consultation - carers need a unified voice in any locality to ensure that they have an impact on decision-making. By working with other agencies and consulting carers, Carers' Centres can have a strong influence on local policy, planning procedures and outcomes. They can also ensure that the local carers' voice can be linked in to the regional and national decision-making bodies.
Carers' Centres develop other services in response to identified local needs. These might include:
- Advocacy - at tribunals, assessments, case reviews, assistance to access funds and services, or whenever a carer needs a friend or supporter
- Practical help - befriending, breaks, transport, benefits advice
- Training and education - in skills often needed by carers, such as moving and handling, first aid, and care giving; personal development; stress reduction through reflexology and aromatherapy; and training and education for professionals on carer-related issues
- Fun - time out, breaks, the opportunity to enjoy a social life, taking into account carers' special needs and sense of isolation
The aim of our work is to help ensure that no carer has to reach crisis point before they get the support they need. In short, to make it easier for carers to cope.
There are 144 local centres as part of The Network. Find your local carers' centre here