You might not think of yourself as a carer. But if you regularly look after someone close to you because they are frail, have a physical or mental illness, addiction or disability, then there is free support available for you.
Perhaps you look after your partner, another member of your family, or even a friend. Support is available whether you live with them or not. Call York Carers Centre on (01904) 715490 to find out more.
Start here – three steps to get you started:
Step 1 – Top tips to get you started
- Think about your finances – You can get advice about any benefits you are entitled to even if you own your own house and have savings.
- Get information and advice for you and the person you look after. For example, you may want to know how to get help at home, or better support from school or work.
- Talk to other carers – Many organisations run events, trips and activities, training and support groups enabling you to take a break and have the chance to meet other people in the same situation as yourself.
- Look after yourself – checklists, factsheets and videos are available to help you.
- Plan for emergencies with a Carers Emergency Card – If you look after someone over 18, who lives in the City of York, then you can apply for a card.
- Ask for a Carers Assessment of Need – Talk to a social care professional from the City of York Council about your needs and how to make it easier for you to care. It is not an assessment of how good you are at caring. You can fill in a self-assessment on the City of York Council’s website.
- Get a Carers’ Discount Card – Register with York Carers Centre and get discounts at many businesses in York.
- Have your say – Help influence services for carers by letting decision-makers know what works well, and what doesn’t. This could include taking part in consultations, volunteering or joining relevant groups.
Step 2 – Contact York Carers Centre
York Carers Centre will be able to give you more information about the top tips. They work with all carers; adult carers, young adult carers (18 to 25), young carers (8 to 18), and carers who are affected by drug or alcohol addiction. York Carers Centre will also put you in touch with other organisations and forums that can support you.
Step 3 – Tell people you are a carer
City of York Council may be able to help support the person you care for. They can help with practical support, such as adaptations and equipment, travel passes, parking badges and telecare. They also carry out Carers Assessments of Need.
Tell your GP that you are a carer. They will record this on your notes and they may be able to offer you extra support.
Talk to your friends and family – they may not be aware of the level of care you provide. Don’t try to cope alone. They may be able to support you and help you take a break.
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