Southern Trust highlights support for Carers
02/06/2014In recognition of Carers Week (9-15 June 2014) the Southern Trust is hosting an event to highlight support for carers from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) Communities.
The event is open to carers from BME communities and individuals and organisations who provide support. It will take place on Wednesday 11 June 2014 from 10.30am to12.30pm in Lough Neagh Discovery Centre, Oxford Island, Craigavon, Co Armagh BT66 6NJ.
The event is being organised by the Trust in partnership with the Regional BME Carers Group and is funded by the Public Health Agency. To book your place contact Patricia McCrink, Carer’s Coordinator on Tel: 028 3083 4252.
Carers are people who provide unpaid care to a relative or friend who has a long term illness, disability, or who suffers from mental ill health or frailty due to age. The Trust wishes to identify the needs of carers so that they receive support to assist them in their caring role and to signpost to other support services and organisations that can help.
Angela McVeigh, Director of Older People and Primary Care for the Southern Trust explained: “Many people do not think of themselves as a ‘carer’, they may simply see themselves as a husband, wife, son, daughter, friend or partner. If you are caring for someone you may wonder where to go to for practical help and advice.
"The review of Health and Social Care in Northern Ireland, Transforming Your Care, highlighted how critical carers are in providing vital support to their loved ones and acknowledges that carers need support to enable them to manage and maintain their own health and wellbeing.
“People are entitled to a Carer’s Assessment if they are looking after someone who has been assessed as eligible for services from the Trust, even if those services aren’t being used. The assessment is aimed at making caring easier by providing support for you and the person you are caring for. It ensures that you are listened to and, where possible, the help you need is provided.
“Maintaining carer’s health and wellbeing is of utmost importance and there are a range of supports that may be available for carers including: respite, Direct Payments, training or a Carers Cash Grant. To find out if you are eligible for any of the supports available contact the key worker of the person you care for and they will arrange for you to have a Carer’s Assessment or if you have already been offered one, a review of your previous assessment.
Angela added: “To ensure that carers are aware of the range of support available locally, the Trust works in partnership with Carers Matter, a voluntary organisation that provides generic carer support and advice and also connects carers to additional practical, financial and specialist help. Carers Matter have outreach workers and volunteers across the Trust areas of Craigavon and Banbridge, Armagh and Dungannon and Newry and Mourne. Many carers often find it difficult to understand the ever-changing benefit system but this is just an example of one of the supports Carers Matter can give in helping to understand what you are entitled to and how it will affect you.”
The Trust is also a partner in the Carer’s Trust Big Lottery funded Mind the Gap Project that identifies older carers and signposts them to existing local carer’s support services.
A Carer’s Coordinator, employed by the Trust works closely with Carers Matter and is developing and implementing the Trust’s Carer Strategy. The Carer’s Coordinator works closely with other groups and organisations that provide support to carers to ensure that carers are provided with the support they need to remain in their caring role
If you would like more information about support available to carers please contact Carers Matters on Tel: 028 4062 7581 or Southern Trust Carer’s Coordinator on Tel: 028 3083 4252.