On Monday the Depute Provost of Renfrewshire, Cathy McEwan officially launched Carers Week. She spoke of the great work the Centre provides to Carers in Renfrewshire and did an overview of our activities and events throughout the week. You can view the Programme here.
Diane Goodman, Centre Manager spoke of how at some point it may affect each and everyone of us in our lifetime, whether we become a Carer or need care ourselves; it is therefore vitally important we get the support for Carers correct. Caring can be hugely rewarding but it also has it’s challenges and caring without the right support and information can be tough – evidence has shown that it can cause ill health, poverty and social isolation.
This year, National Carers Week theme is Getting Carers Connected, whether that be to services, friends and family, to others including other Carers for vital peer support and technology.
Carron O’Byrne, Head of Health and Social Care (Paisley) then spoke of her new role within Renfrewshire and high numbers of Carers currently identified. Carron spoke of her dedication to work together with the Centre to keep identifying hidden Carers and get them the support they need. Carron also shared her personal story of her own experience of becoming a Carer and how that impacted her when she was in full time employment.
Diane advised the audience that we were hosting a Pamper Evening on the Tuesday evening to target working carers or those who may not be able to make it into the Centre during the day. During this event we hoped to consult with Carers if they would like to have an evening support group and when is good for them. We hope to launch this later in the year.
Cathy Mearns, Young Carers Resource Worker from Renfrewshire Council spoke of how 94 Young Carers Statements were now in place and how they have developed a fabulous App which Young Carers can now use to identify and refer themselves to get support in the caring role. The Centre continues to work in Partnership with the local authority to support Young Carers in Renfrewshire.
One of our Adult Carers, Mrs Elizabeth Loughery then shared her very powerful story of becoming a Carer for her husband and how difficult they as a couple found getting information and advice before the point of diagnosis. Elizabeth explained how eventually a Link Worker gave them our contact details and she spoke very highly of the support received via our Adult Support Team. Thank you so much for speaking Elizabeth, you did a marvellous job and we were all very humbled by your willingness to share such personal experience.
You can read Elizabeth’s story here.
Unfortunately noone from our Young Carers Project could attend as they were at school so Pauline Kelly, our Young Carers Development read a personal story from one of the Young Carers who comes along to the groups. You can ready this here.
We then moved onto our Annual General Meeting. Our Annual Report is now published here.
Carers UK have published their report – you can view the entire report here.