Salford’s health and social care organisations are joining forces with national charity Carers UK to offer 24/7 advice.
A new website, called Digital Resource for Carers, has been launched to help carers understand their rights, the support available to them and how to look after themselves while caring for someone.
With more than 23,000 carers in Salford, 6,400 of whom provide more than 50 hours care a week, the new website will provide round the clock help and advice. It is being funded by Salford City Council, NHS Salford Clinical Commissioning Group and Salford Royal.
Councillor Tracy Kelly, lead member for adult services, health and wellbeing at Salford City Council, said: “Carers do an amazing job but sometimes don’t realise they may be entitled to extra support. This is another way of supporting carers.”
Dr Tom Tasker, chair for Salford CCG, said: “This website is an extra resource for carers to be in a stronger position to support themselves and feel more in control of their situation. This, in turn, should help improve their wellbeing. Caring for a loved one can be rewarding, but sometimes it can be tough too and we want carers to be aware that they are not alone and help is available.”
Pete Murphy, director of nursing at Salford Royal NHS Foundation Trust, said: “Caring is a big part of many people’s lives but it can be difficult and lonely, so it’s important that carers know that help and support is out there, and how they can access it.”
The Digital Resource for Carers includes guides to caring, information on carers rights and where to go for financial or practical help, how to be an advocate on behalf of the person you’re caring for and information on both local and national technology, products and services to help with caring.
It also has e learning courses to help carers take care of themselves through healthy eating, and building support networks and an app to help carers who share the role to message each other and manage tasks, medication and calendars.
Nationally, Carers UK estimate one in four women aged 50 to 64 have caring responsibilities, compared to one in six men. Caring has a negative effect on health and on finances, with almost one in three or 30% of carers seeing a drop of £20,000 or more a year in their household income as a result of caring (Carers UK, 2014)
To find out more about the Digital Resource for Carers visit carersdigital.org and create a new account by using code DGTL3329.