What support is available for unpaid carers

I work and care full time, and the recent months die to the cost off living crisis etc my income me just doesn’t seem to be stretching far enough time have been tough lately

Hi Leeanne - Welcome to the Forum and well done for starting a thread.

Carers Allowance:

The person you care for must be claiming certain benefits for you to qualify. These are shown on the first page of the gov web page on that link.

CarersUK website has a section on Financial Matters and people are available to help guide you through it all. Check out this link within CarersUk website:

Perhaps getting a “Benefits Check” might be of help too. That would let you see what financial help may be available to you.

Have you registered with your GP as a Carer? That is an important thing to do because then the GP is aware of your situation and can offer support. They can also refer you to other Agencies - Carers Support Service for instance which can provide much more information and SUPPORT through a lot of different means. You are entitled to a Carer’s Assessment (for YOU not the cared for person) which should assess YOUR needs and most Local Authorities will give a small grant (maybe £200) towards you doing something for yourself. That could be gym membership, a short break, days out or whatever YOU decide would be good for you.

Some Councils will provide a 'sitting service; where someone can come to sit with the Cared Person so YOU can get a break for a couple of hours - go for a swim, a walk, get your hair done, go shopping for yourself, that sort of thing.

Also Care Support Services often provide in person or online meets so you can let out your frustrations, ask for advice or help and things like that - all anonymously so there is no embarrassment about admitting you might be struggling and NO ONE will judge you.

On here - check out the monthly Roll Call thread. That’s a great place to find information, chat with others (its been described as “the garden fence” where some of us let off steam and have a natter about our day and that sort of thing. No judgement, no TELLING you what to do, but perhaps offer a bit of advice and even a shoulder for a virtual-cry. The thing to remember is that everyone on here is or was a Carer so we know what it is like and how lonely and isolating it can be and how awful it feels when you don’t have someone to turn to. Here you can share as much or as little as you want and at the end of the day, you can always stop logging on if you find it isn’t right for you. :grin:

Here is a link to this month’s “Roll Call” thread. Have a read through and see what it’s about then say hello - I guarantee you will get a warm welcome. https://forum.carersuk.org/t/roll-call-april-2023/123252



I’d like to echo Chris’ comment about getting a Carer’s Assessment.

Your local authority has to give you an assessment if you request one. No ifs and buts - they have to.

As Chris says, the assessment is about your welfare needs and it is not means tested. In other words, anyone who is a carer can be considered - regardless of their income.

If done correctly, a carer’s assessment can identify ways to support you that you might not be able to put in place yourself or even have thought about.

For example, when I was a carer and working full time, I was given a £200 payment to enable me to treat the children to some family days out over the course of the year in order to create some memories for all of us. Why? It was identified that my earning ability was limited through being a carer (not being able to do overtime to afford family treats).

All carer’s assessments are of course unique to the individual (which is the point!), so your carer’s assessment might identify something very different in the way of help.

And just to say, I’m only reiterating Chris’ well made point because carers so often overlook their own welfare and financial needs. It took me some time to realise this - but you’ve got to look after yourself first in order to be an effective carer for others.

Nowadays I’m a huge advocate and promoter of carers putting themselves first.