NHS Trusts mark Carers Week
A young girl with a disability being lifted with a harness. Her carer guides her from the bed, looking at her and smiling.

NHS Trusts across the country are marking Carers Week this year, as well as pushing for unpaid carers to receive more support.

Carers Week, taking place from 10–16 June 2024, is a UK-wide awareness campaign seeking to increase visibility for carers with decision makers, services, employers, communities, and businesses.

This year's theme is 'Putting Carers on the Map', which aims to to highlight the increasing pressures carers and to campaign for much-needed recognition and support.

This includes raising awareness about the challenges carers face which impact on their finances, employment, health and wellbeing and ensuring policymakers and politicians take steps to better support carers’ needs.

Carers UK found that over 80 per cent of carers said the impact of caring on their physical and mental health would be a challenge over the coming year, with nearly 60 per cent adding that being valued as a carer would improve their wellbeing.

Helen Walker, chief executive of Carers UK said: "We want carers to know they are not forgotten, and they are not alone. 

"The dedicated, committed support unpaid carers provide day in day out has been valued as the equivalent of a second NHS, but often carers tell us that they feel unseen and undervalued.

"Many are at breaking point, facing challenges managing caring alongside their own health and wellbeing – with 78% of carers worried about being unable to care in the future."

In an effort to combat this, NHS Trusts are launching new strategies.

For example, Argyll and Bute Health and Social Care Partnership (HSCP) and partners are introducing a new Carers Strategy for 2024 to 2027.

They will host events with the aim of bringing together carers, community members, and local organisations to share valuable resources, offer support, and celebrate the contributions of unpaid carers. 

Workshops, informational sessions, and social gatherings will be part of the itinerary, providing carers with opportunities to connect, learn, and ensure they know about all the support and services available to themselves and the cared for.

In addition to these events, Carers Centres will offer one-on-one consultations to help carers navigate the available unpaid carer support and services tailored to their needs, including eligibility for Social Security Scotland benefits.

Additionally, Oxford Health are encouraging carers to take some time out for themselves and to remember that their wellbeing is just as important as the person they care for and support.

This will come in the form of free online wellbeing related activities, where carers of all ages are welcome.