We’re ensuring unpaid family and friend carers are identified, supported, heard and know their rights this Carers Rights Day and beyond

It’s important people who provide unpaid care or support to someone close to them due to illness, a disability, frailty or addiction, know their rights, wherever they are in their caring journey. This Carers Rights Day (Thursday 24th November 2022) and beyond, we want to help raise awareness about how we at Carers in Hertfordshire and other services are there to ensure carers are identified, informed, supported and heard.

This year’s theme is ‘Caring Costs’ as being a carer can have an impact on a person’s health and wellbeing, employment options, finances and relationships.

Whether you are a new carer or have been looking after someone for a while, why not find out about your rights and the support available to you? One way we support carers is by organising workshops and events to enable you to meet other carers and have a break from caring, to pick up tips to help them in their caring role, or talk to MPs and people from organisations that pay for or provide health and community services.

We have a range of activities taking place for Carers Rights Day, which include:
• Our Annual Event for Carers on Tuesday 22nd November 2022 in Hatfield. Carers attending can take part in workshops including chair yoga, mindfulness practice Qi Gong, planning for the future and a discussion about carers’ breaks. There will also be information stands and a chance to get advice about using a smartphone or tablet.
• An Empowerment for Carers Event on Zoom on Thursday 24th November 2022. We are running this event with Rethink Mental Illness for carers of someone with a mental health condition and/or addiction issues and carers will be able to learn about their rights, managing expectations, dealing with challenges and looking after themselves.
• Our Stevenage Carers Support Hub has its meeting on Thursday 24th November, 10.30am – 12.30pm at Stevenage Leisure Centre.
• Finally, we have arranged for a small group of carers from the St Albans area to meet with St Albans MP Daisy Cooper to discuss any caring related challenges and matters.

A Carers in Hertfordshire spokesperson said: “Most of us will care for someone or need looking after at some point in our lives. Currently, one in five adults in the UK provide care. This Carers Rights Day and beyond we want to empower carers with information and support, so that they can feel confident in asking for help when they need it and challenge things when their rights are not being met.”

If you are in Hertfordshire who provide unpaid care to someone or you live elsewhere and look after someone in the county, we are there for you. To find out about our services and how we can help you email us at contact@carersinherts.org.uk or call us on 01992 58 69 69. Our Carer Support Advisors are there to provide information or advice related to caring.

National charity Carers UK, which co-ordinates Carers Rights Day, has some useful information related to a range of carers’ rights on its website www.carersuk.org or get in touch by emailing advice@carersuk.org or calling 0808 808 7777 (9am – 6pm Monday to Friday).