News you might have missed
Crossroads selected for Co-op Local Community Fund
We’re thrilled to let you know that the Crossroads Care Wokingham “Memory Lane” project has been chosen for the current round of the Co-op Local Community Fund.
We have asked for help to provide our support workers with reminiscence based aids and prompts for people with dementia. These will be used to share memories, recapture the emotions and feelings attached to those memories, improve communication and enable people with dementia to have fun.
How does it work?
Between April to October 2017, for all Co-op members:
- 1% of everything you spend on Co-op products and services goes into your membership account
- You can then choose (by logging onto your membership account or calling the membership contact centre) to give your 1% to one of three causes in your community, or any of the 4,500 causes identified across the UK
- You can change your mind at any time. If you don’t choose at all your 1% will be split between the three causes equally.
Money from the sale of 5p Co-op carrier bags and their reusable bag range will also be used to ‘top up’ the funding for each cause.
To find out more and/or to apply to be a member (which only costs £1) see: www.coop.co.uk/membership
Please don’t forget to choose our Memory Lane project (click here) as ‘your cause’ so that we can help out many more carers in need!
We’re proud to announce the release of two new videos promoting our work. ‘Help for unpaid’ carers and ‘Me Time’ show you the dedicated work our Carer Support Workers do and how having a Me Time break can really help to relieve the strains of your everyday caring role. See here.
One in four unpaid carers “have not had a day off” in five years
Carers UK – July 2017
Carers are reaching ‘breaking point’ as they struggle to take even a day away from care responsibilities for years at a time. The Carers UK ‘State of Caring 2017’ report has found. 4 in 10 (40%) of unpaid carers have not had a break in over one year, whilst one in four (25%) had not received a single day away from caring in five years.
It found that carers most frequently listed access to breaks as one of three factors which could make a difference in their lives. Yet few can take regular breaks, with only 16% of carers currently buying or receiving a break from caring in the form of services such as respite or alternative care provisions.
Carers who had not had a break in a year or more reported a deterioration in their health, both mentally (73%) and physically (65%).
Carers named a number of barriers preventing them from taking a break:
- Cost – Paying for or contributing towards the cost of a break (31%)
- Care concerns – Person cared for is unwilling to accept support from others (31%),
- support not on offer (27%), or
- low confidence in quality of care (19%)
- Lack of awareness – Carers would not know how to request a break (16%)
For more on this important research see Carers UK State of Caring 2017.
Please call Crossroads on 0118 979 5324 if you would like to know how we can help you to take a much needed break.
Caring for someone can be really rewarding, but it can also be tiring and stressful. If you are a carer the following information from Age UK provides practical support and advice to help. You can order free printed copies of any of this information by calling Age UK Advice on 0800 169 6565 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Advice for Carers
Read these tips to find out what benefits are available to claim, how to request flexible working hours, how to organise respite care and much more. Read the guide >
Adapting your home
Information and ideas about how to adapt your home to enable you, or the person you care for, to live safely and independently. Read the guide >
Caring for someone with dementia
If you know someone who is caring for someone with dementia, read this information to know what to expect as the illness progresses and where to turn to for help. Read the guide >
According to a new online public poll published on 12th June for the start of Carers Week 74% of the UK public feel carers are not sufficiently valued by society for the support they provide. This figure rises to 83% of those who have previous experience of caring themselves.
The numbers of unpaid carers is rising faster than the general population. Each day, 6000 people take on a caring role but the poll showed that many people are unaware how likely it is they would take on a caring role and would be unprepared if they did become a carer.
One in five people aged 50-64 are carers yet half of those who are not currently carers (50%) thought it unlikely they would ever become a carer.
For people who have never had experience of caring their top three concerns are i) affordability of care and the impact on their finances, ii) coping with the stress of caring (43%) and iii) they would worry they didn’t have the skills or experience to become a carer.
The online YouGov poll was conducted on behalf of eight major charities who are calling on the new UK Government and society to do more to recognise the important contribution that unpaid carers make and support them to care.
To find out more see: RESEARCH REPORT
Call for carers to help prioritise need for respite
Berkshire Community Foundation (BCF) has launched their 2017 Vital Signs Survey. The focus in this 2017 Year of Mental Health, in Partnership with Brighter Berkshire, is on mental health and wellbeing in Berkshire. In just 10 minutes or less, you can tell them which causes need support in Berkshire by ‘giving’ your virtual donations. The results will be used to produce a community ‘health-check’ report revealing priorities, needs and opportunities for action to help tackle this very important matter.
In 2016 the Vital Signs report identified Health & Wellbeing as being the key issue; with mental health support the most popular local cause, closely followed by carers respite.
If you’d like to make sure carers respite continues to be identified as a priority need please take part. Carer’s respite has been identified in the survey as a ‘Keeping Safe’ issue.
N.B. By taking part you could also win one of three £1,000 grants to be given by BCF to a cause of your choice.
Carers Trust has produced a new guide packed with tried and tested ways to help carers cope with the strain caring can put on their relationships.
Many carers find that looking after someone can cause relationship problems with partners, family and friends. Carers may keep worries to themselves and feel they are betraying the person they care for if they admit their caring role is affecting their relationship. This can be particularly hard if they are caring for their partner.
Funded by the Department for Works and Pensions, and working in partnership with relationships advice experts OnePlusOne, the guide is available free at: http://relationships.carers.org/
Wokingham Borough Council (WBC) has reviewed its disabled short breaks provision. Parents involved in the consultation asked for breaks monies to be given directly to them so they can make choices about services, involving less paperwork.
Upon completion in March 2017 the following agreed actions will be taken:
- development of a new “preferred provider” list of WBC quality assured short breaks services
- a two year transition period from the existing block contracts to the new model to enable gradual change
- a pre-paid Wokingham Card will be introduced to enable families to take control of purchasing short breaks. The card (a MasterCard) will be uploaded with the payment and can be used to purchase services directly so it will no longer be necessary to keep receipts, hence less paperwork.
If preferred, WBC can still manage short breaks on a family’s behalf or can ask a provider to do this for them.
Events for Carers Week 2017 – 12th to 18th June
Carers Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK see: http://www.carersweek.org/
In support of this year’s theme “Carer Friendly Communities” there are a number of events taking place in Wokingham and Bracknell Forest you might like to attend.
Wokingham Outreach Carers Hub has organised fun filled events, an Information Day on Thursday, 15th June 10.00am – 2.30pm at the Coppid Beech Hotel (lunch provided) and a Boat Trip and Picnic in Windsor on Friday 16th June. Young Carers can enjoy a Water Activities Day on Saturday 17th June. Contact the Carers Hub on Tel: 0118 324 7333 or see here.
Signal4Carers has lots of events and activities for local carers, including advice and information stalls, discounts on activities and free Tai Chi, Yoga and Dance classes for beginners. A questionnaire is being used to reveal how supportive the local community is at recognising and supporting carers. Dates and times of all the Bracknell Forest planned activities can be obtained from 01344 266088 or see here.