By joining forces we feel we can strengthen the services and support we provide unpaid carers and the people they look after, and offer a seamless service.
The timing for the review has been prompted by upcoming budget setting by commissioners – Hertfordshire County Council and NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups in the county.
Michèle Stokes, our Chief Executive, said: “Supporting unpaid carers is at the heart of our organisations and we feel by joining forces we can strengthen our offer and services. Both of our charities are committed to ensuring unpaid carers are recognised, valued, informed and supported in their caring role and that they have a collective voice with the chance to be involved in planning and decision-making with regards to services for them.
She continued: “A partnership or merger would mean carers will have one less service to be referred to, freeing up their time. There would be a reduction in duplicated services and likely cost savings.”
Barbara Kennedy, Chief Executive of Hertfordshire Crossroads-South, said: “Both of our charities have a wealth of experience providing trusted and valued services to unpaid carers as between us we have been established for over 20 years. We feel it appropriate to see how we can work together to improve our services and reach a wider number and range of carers, who may not already be receiving the support they need.”
A merger could also make it easier to access funding, raise the profile and plight of unpaid carers and improve service provision with shared skills and working practices.
There are many decisions under discussion and the charities will provide further announcements and updates when appropriate.
Both Michèle and Barbara said: “We want to thank the individuals, businesses and organisations in the community who have raised funds or given donations or their expertise in the past and hope this will continue as we look to the future, working together. We hope that like us, you believe that by joining forces we will be stronger and more influential and ensure unpaid carers have a range of services that meet their changing needs.”
Carers in Hertfordshire has 48 staff and 167 volunteers and Hertfordshire Crossroads-South has 85 staff and 48 volunteers. The charities combined income and expenditure a year is around £2.5 million.
You can find out more about the charities and the support provided by calling us on 01992 58 69 69 or 0208 905 1158 for Hertfordshire Crossroads-South.