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Support available for unpaid carers this Christmas and beyond

Release Date: 22 December 2020

Christmas is a time to take a break and relax for many people – but not for most unpaid carers who care for loved ones 365 days a year.

In 2019 there were over 18,000 (8.5% of the population) Richmond upon Thames residents who provided unpaid care to a family member or a friend who due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction, cannot cope without their support. This figure will have risen as an additional 4.5 million people in the UK have become unpaid carers since the pandemic began. While Christmas can still be a joyful time, it can also be a difficult time for unpaid carers with extra costs and fewer services available.

Unpaid carers in Richmond upon Thames are reminded of the help and support services available. A carer’s assessment can help carers understand the impact caring is having on their life and the support options available to them. Unpaid carers may be able to get help and advice with personal health and financial concerns, practical help in the home, and any worries about the future.

For more information and to complete the assessment, view Carer's assessments

Cllr Piers Allen, Lead member for adult social care and health and the Chair of the Health and Wellbeing Board, said:

"The scale of the care being provided behind closed doors is incredible. Without unpaid carers, our health and social care systems would buckle. Yet many feel ignored. This is a reminder that you are not alone and that you can access help through the Council’s carers assessments.

"We also want to make support for unpaid carers a central focus in the prioritisation of the local health system’s health and care plans, while continuing to implement the actions highlighted in the Richmond Carers Strategy 2020-25."

See more details of support for unpaid carers during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Notes for editors

If you are a journalist and would like further information about this press release, contact  Fenna Maynard on 020 8487 5182.

Reference: P506/20

Updated: 24 March 2021