A lot of people who provide unpaid support do not see themselves as carers as they may feel that is a normal part of life. In Greenwich we appreciate the immense contribution of unpaid carers to our community – we also know that caring can sometimes be overwhelming and difficult to fit around your other commitments. That’s why we have a range of services that can help and support you to care.
What is a Carer?
A carer is “a person of any age, adult or child, who provides unpaid support to a partner, child, relative or friend who couldn’t manage to live independently or whose health or wellbeing would deteriorate without this help. This could be due to frailty, disability or serious health condition, mental ill health or substance misuse.” – The Royal College of General Practitioners, 2011.
A lot of people who provide unpaid support do not see themselves as carers as they may feel that is a normal part of life. This support might include:
- personal care such as assistance with bathing and dressing
- help with medication
- cooking, grocery shopping and domestic tasks
- accompanying to appointments
- help managing finances
- emotional support.
In Greenwich we appreciate the immense contribution of unpaid carers to our community – we also know that caring can sometimes be overwhelming and difficult to fit around your other commitments. That’s why we have a range of services that can help and support you to care.
Tell Us if you’re a Carer
In April 2015, there were changes to the way care and support is provided in England. The Care Act introduced new rights for carers, meaning that you can get the support you need to help you continue caring and look after your own wellbeing.
Since April 2015 you have had the right to:
- have your views taken into consideration by health and social care services when supporting or treating the person you care for
- have an assessment of your own needs as a carer (either jointly with the person you care for or separately)
- specific advice and information for carers that you can understand
- have your say if you are no longer prepared to care, or are not prepared to do an element of caring
- be helped to develop a carer’s support plan
- a personal budget to meet any ‘eligible needs’
- a choice as to how your personal budget is managed.
Support for Carer’s
Greenwich Carers Centre
The Greenwich Carers Centre in Charlton has a team of dedicated and professional support workers who are on hand to support you with any aspect of your caring role. Once registered, you will have a named support worker to advise and support you.76 Hornfair Road
London, SE7 7BD
Phone: 0300 300 2233
Free PPE for unpaid carers
If you provide personal care for a friend or family member you are now eligible for free PPE (personal protective equipment). If you are caring for somebody (particularly if they are not in your household), you might want to consider using PPE to protect yourself and the person you are caring for.
To order your PPE please fill out the online application form, once you have done this we will contact you directly to fulfil your order.
Services available in the local area
There are loads of advice and support services, activities and facilities in Greenwich that could help. Some services are specific for carers, others are open for all residents. Take a look at our Greenwich Community Directory to get some ideas.
Things you could do yourself
There may be many things you can do to reduce your stress, keep well and manage the caring role, for example:
- learning relaxation techniques
- taking exercise when you can
- keeping up contact with family and friends.
Things your family, neighbours or friends could do
The person you care for may be able to do more than you thought – it’s worth a try because you would be helping them to retain their independence, which helps with wellbeing. Other members of your family or people you are close to may be able to do more – ask them if they can do some specific tasks or give you a break for an hour or two.
Support and care to the person you care for
The Council may provide the person you care for with funding to have care at home (either on a regular basis or from time to time) depending on their needs. There may be a charge for this. If the person you care for receives funding or care, this is likely to help by providing you with a break.
Who can have a carer’s assessment?
You are entitled to a carer’s assessment if you provide unpaid support on an informal basis to an adult (aged 18 or over) with care or support needs. The Royal Borough of Greenwich provides funding to support carers of people who live in the borough. Carers who live in Greenwich but care for someone living elsewhere can also access some services here. You may wish to have your assessment with the local authority where the person lives, as they may provide a greater level of support.
- Care or support needs could be a wide range of issues – for example the person you care for may be older and frail, may have a long-term illness or disability, or a mental health or drug/alcohol problem.
- The care provided may include personal care tasks such as:
- bathing or dressing
- helping someone with shopping, cooking or eating
- emotional support
- managing medication or finances on someone’s behalf
- accompanying or providing transport for someone to access health appointments or social activities.
You may be an adult, or a young carer aged under 18. However, there are differences to what young carers can expect (see below).
People not entitled to a carer’s assessment
You are not entitled to a carer’s assessment if you:
- are paid by an organisation or individual to provide care
- provide care to a family member or friend as a paid Personal Assistant
- provide care as a volunteer in an organisation
- provide care to someone in prison or hospital, although you can get an assessment as soon as you know they will be released or discharged
- provide care to a child under the age of 18 – if you provide care to a child with additional care and support needs, Children’s Services who will assess and review your child’s needs should also take into account your needs; you are also entitled to use the services for carers advertised on these pages.
Arranging your carer’s assessment
If you feel you would benefit from a carer’s assessment, or if you wish to find out more information there are a number of options available.
- Phone: 020 8921 2304
- Email: [email protected]