A recent West Sussex County Council survey revealed that eight out of ten family and friend carers reported feeling tired and seven out of ten are feeling stressed and experiencing disturbed sleep with more than half feeling depressed.
An often-overlooked point is, a carer can look like and be anyone, there is no one stereotype defining a carer. Carers Support West Sussex (CSWS) offers practical and emotional support no matter what the caring circumstance, ranging from the 85-year-old husband caring for his wife with dementia to the 18-year-old looking after his mum with a long-term illness.
One carer described how she never felt important enough to reach out for help until she was at breaking point, saying: “Before contact with CSWS, I was crying daily tears of fear and sorrow” following support received by this carer, there are now claims of ‘crying with joy and relief’.
CSWS knows all too well that one size doesn’t fit all, as there are so many different roles a carer can take on, which is the thinking behind their current campaign; ‘We are with you no matter what’.
The main ethos behind the campaign is to highlight that CSWS really will support family and friend carers no matter what their caring role, where they live in West Sussex, age, sex, religion, ethnic origin and no matter what is happening even in a global pandemic, CSWS are with you.
Chief executive, Sonia Mangan adds: “We want to make sure our local carers are receiving all the support they need to cope in their caring role. We totally get that caring can be wonderful and tough, whether you have recently become a carer or been taking care of someone for years.
“We will provide you with relevant information and guidance along with practical and emotional support. Always at the right time and in the right manner. We are with you no matter what.”
CSWS offer a free service supporting unpaid carers. During the restrictions placed by Covid-19, the organisation has confirmed that it is still taking referrals using a combination of phone and online methods. Carers Support West Sussex offers:
- Emotional support via the response line 0300 028 8888
- Carer Contingency Planning
- Carer Assessments
- Carer Wellbeing fund
- Practical guidance (including free equipment and grants)
- Information provision relevant to your caring situation
Carers who have not yet registered with Carers Support West Sussex are invited to register themselves to enable access to the carer network. Those already registered are welcomed for continued support in their caring role.