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The NHS Choices community where carers share their experiences, ask questions, get advice and discuss their situation with other carers.
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    It’s been a while since I’ve blogged for the Carers Direct team, but I’m only too happy to do so now, as I’ve got something very exciting to write about!

    Last year we embarked on a mission to find a caring family. We wanted to try to show what life is really like for carers. We thought we could do this by giving a family a video camera and asking them to record their daily lives – their highs and lows, their struggles and triumphs. We knew this would only reflect one family's experience, but it would show a small sample of things carers do day-in and day-out.

    It was easier said than done, and we searched across the country for a family to undertake this task. We realised that we were asking a lot of a family already under pressure from their caring roles. We knew it would be a very special family that would agree to get involved.

    Thankfully, with the help of a local branch of the National Autistic Society, we met Marie and Alan and their two daughters, Jasmine and Paris (now aged 16 and 14). Jasmine has autism, scoliosis, dyslexia and dyspraxia.  As a family, they work together to make life as comfortable as possible for her. They’ve been through a lot of hard times in trying to get Jasmine the support she has needed, but they have also learnt a lot along the way, and as mum Marie says, they can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

    That’s why they decided to put their lives on film – they’ve been there, they’ve done that, and they have learnt valuable lessons that they wanted to share with others. They also thought it would be ‘therapeutic’ for them as a family, to talk about their feelings and experiences.

    They had the camera for about six weeks (with some additional filming support from us) and they were able to capture their thoughts on everyday life, from the things they do for and with Jasmine each day, to them all going out as a family, and the steps they take to make sure everyone has a good time.

    From this we’ve made seven episodes under the title ‘Caring for Jasmine’. Each film covers a different topic, such as diagnosis, relationships and going places. They are going to be released one by one on our NHS Choices YouTube channel leading up to World Autism Awareness Day, Saturday 2 April 2011. If you can’t wait to watch each episode, they’ll also be available at our Real stories hub.

    Jasmine herself asked not to be filmed, but she is as much as part of this series of films as the rest of her family. We had a great time working with a wonderful family, and hope everyone enjoys the films as much as we enjoyed making them.

    If you'd like to leave a comment, please feel free to do so below, or on the Carers community forum. We also have more than 7,000 friends on our Facebook page now - you can post your thoughts and comments there as well.

    Take care, 

    Patricia.

     

     

  • A friend and fellow-carer has put this book in my hands.  Wonderful.  Great reading for all carers (who of course are NOT selfish pigs, but may think they are).  The author, Hugh Marriott, is a carer of his wife who has Huntingdon's Disease.

    This winter, as usual, has been a struggle for me.  My beloved, the Great Survivor, keeps ticking along.  I began the year, Jan 1st, by driving to the emergency doctor's clinic to pick up anti-viral drugs for shingles, which had developed over Christmas.  After a few weeks it moved from my face into my eye, and caused more problems.  Fortunately not enough to stop me in my tracks.  Friends and neighbours helped with 'gourmet meals on wheels' mostly lovely homemade soup.

    However, I got the message and we have finally decided to bring in care for my beloved.  At present a carer comes every morning for 1/2 hour to wash and dress him.  We know we are very fortunate to be able to pay for this.  On the other hand, we go without the sort of activities which normally absorb disposable incomes: holidays, meals out, other kinds of treats.

    I thought this would simply help me in a physical way, spare my body some aches and pains associated with the caring tasks.  However, the main benefit has been psychological - someone to share the responsibility, to moan too when things have been difficult, to seek advice from (as the different carers who turn up have all a wealth of experience).   My family and friends too are greatly relieved as they feared they would be next in line for caring duties if I collapsed.  If I do collapse, we now have a framework on which to build in extra care!

    The great survivor enjoys the attentions of the different people who come to care for him.  I thought he would miss my personal attentions.  In fact he is glad he has a more cheerful wife back!

    Hazel

  • We've been a bit too quiet - sorry - been busy, been suffering at the hands of every winter virus that exists and been, as usual, rather p*****d off with all aspects of officialdom who seem itent on making our lives as miserable as possible - do you think they get a bonus for this? ! 

    So today there is even more reason to be p****d off with officialdom - the launch of the white paper on benefits that will see the majority of us carers screwed even more than we already are!  Don't believe the claims that nobody will be worse off - of course we will!  Oh they gaily state that nobody will receive less cash and if their new rate on universal credit is lower than their current rate then they will continue to be paid at the higher rate - except they won't really - because their higher rate will not increase in April each year until the new, lower rate, catches up with them!

    And what an apt day for my daughter's letter to arrive from the benefits people - setting out how her Incpacity Benefit will increase in April.  Now if you've had your letter you will already know that IB will increase from  £91.40 to £94.25 , an increase of £2.85.  Problem is that her age related addition is decreasing from £15 to £13.80.  So her real increase is only £1.65.

    Now before you all jump down my throat and tell me that you don't get an age related addition please remember that in reality neither does she!  When Tory Blur introduced this (what was then an extra tenner) he also introduced a reduction in housing and council tax benefit  - putting her into the non dependent deduction section of HB . So at the time she got an extra £10 but £9.70 was taken away through HB nd CT benefit reductions!  So, as the age related addition is being reduced - is the HB and CT deduction also being reduced so that she is expected to pay less - is it hell!

    But back to the white paper.  What will happen to carers in this new universal credit?  Well if you are lucky enough to be able to work and claim Carers Allowance you will keep your carers allowance.  If you are not able to work due to the nature and extent of your caring role you are being shoved onto the universal credit so that you can now OFFICIALLY be counted in the generalised group that joe public refers to as benefit scroungers.  The government is STEALING YOUR IDENTITY!  Being able to say that you are a carer and are getting CA as opposed to the dole was probably the last bit of integrity and indpendence that most of us had left - but that is about to be snatched away.

    A few years ago when all the idiots at the hospital were pretending to be concerned about us they kept asking if I was getting CA - in the future when they ask any kind of question that might necessitate me admitting to being on the new universal credit the answer will simply be ...'none of your F***ing business!'  And why?  Because we all know that telling them the truth would lead to them judging me in a way that would adversely effect the health care my daughter receives - I'll officially be a benefit scrounger rather than a carer and if we give them that information we will suffer as a result.

    So, even if the new system gives you a few bob more than somebody who is technically unemployed (and we will have to wait to find out the figures), the change will strip you of your identity, your integrity, your independence and your pride.

    I took a quick look at the Carers UK site and their statement admits that they support this change - working carers are to retain their identity as carers so why should the rest of us matter?  I don't now what PRTC thinks - and you know folks I don't actually care what any of these groups think.  What matters is that we, as carers, are about to be kicked in the teeth once again - and anyone who isn't part of the solution is clearly part of the problem.  Time to harrass your MP and get her/him to voice concern about the fact that carers are about to be officially demoted to benefit scroungers by a government that consistently lies about how much they value us and kicks us in the teeth / head when they think nobody else is looking!

  • One Month To Hearbreak

    by ned ludd, carer on 15 January 2011

    i said I wouldn't be blogging here any more, but I have to swallow my pride as this is more important than myself.

    The governments consultation on the DLA cuts ends on Valentines Day (14th feb for the non romantics among us).  The Broken Of britain are running a campaign aimed at carers and disabled people standing up against the cuts.  You can see their stories at http://onemonthbeforeheartbreak.blogspot.com/   You can see my blogs on it at http://nedluddcarer.blogspot.com/  

    These cuts will hurt me, my son and probably you as a carer - almost certainly the people you care for.  Tell your MP and local councillor, how you will be affected - losing Mobility Allowance, losing DLA, cuts in local services to respite care, disabled transport, eligibility criterea excluding people from services, higher charges for care or simply care service reductions and closures.

    We have to make our voice heard - no one else will speak up for us.

  • Welcome to 2011! What is this year going to have in store for you? Will you make this the year you think about returning to work? Perhaps you’ll investigate distance learning options? Or maybe you’ve become a carer for the first time and are wondering where to begin.

    At Carers Direct, we’re hoping carers will try to make it a priority this year to take some time out for themselves. We know that for many people this is much easier said than done, but one of our aims is to try to highlight the importance of carers getting a break and to point them in right direction of respite and support services. After all, if carers neglect their own health and wellbeing, chances are, they will fall ill themselves.

    You can make a start on finding local help and support through the Carers Direct directory. You can find the directory on the home page in the 'Services near you' box on the right-hand side. We’re updating it all the time so if you can’t find a specific service near you now, check back a bit later.

    Another important step in ensuring you’re getting the help you need is to have a carer’s assessment.  This is your chance to discuss with the social services department of your local authority what help you need with caring. You can discuss any help that would maintain your own health and balance caring with other aspects of your life, such as work and family.

    Also, with the start of the new year, thoughts often turn towards saving money – I know mine have.  We’ve got some budgeting tips on Carers Direct which might be worth checking out to help put you in good stead for the rest of the year. There’s practical advice on saving money, bills and banking, potential discounts and more. 

    And finally, after slightly reduced hours over Christmas and New Year, the Carers Direct helpline is back to normal operation. As always, you can call free from UK landlines between 8am to 9pm, Monday to Friday, and 11am to 4pm at weekends on 0808 802 0202. You can also request a free call back in one of more than 170 languages.

    Until next time, take care, 

    Patricia.

  • Surveys and Statistics.

    by TheMother on 16 December 2010

    I received yet another survey request about being a carer this week and as usual am left wondering about the intelligence of the people who compile these things.

    Same old re-hashed questions with the sole intention of getting the responses and results they want, as opposed to the truth!

    Many years ago somebody wrote a book entitled 'How to lie with statistics' - it swiftly went to the top of the reccomended books list for university students studying relevant subjects and it is still in print today.

    The trick with these surveys (when compiling them) is to word the questions so that people are drawn into giving you the answer you want - usually by omitting the options you don't want.

    When filling them in the best bit is if they give you  a box to explain why you ticked 'other' - when I ticked 'other' for the question that wanted to know how the proposed cuts would effect me as a carer I typed in the box 'can't miss what you've never had!' - which just about sums up the state of services for most carers before the cuts!

    I wonder which scientifically proven methodology they'll use to calculate the statistics for that answer!!!

     

  • Another fall

    by Hazel2 on 04 December 2010

    Just when I thought it was safe to relax - a crash from the next room alerts me to the fact that the Great Survivor is testing his survival skills once again.  He had fallen getting out of his recliner chair, probably because he had steadied himself by grabbing his little table on casters.  He had not fallen from a great height but had banged his head on the quarry tiled floor and was bleeding from a cut on his scalp.

    Having just had a morning mug of coffee, I was immediately shaking with the excess of fear and adrenalin.  In fact he seemed fine, had no pain anywhere and would have got up had I been strong enough to help him.  I rang our new (yet old friend) neighbours who were round in a trice to help him back into his chair.  (I know that not moving someone is recommended but as he had no pain in his legs or hips I felt it would be better to get him into the chair).  While this help was being administered I was on the phone to the doctor who said I must call an ambulance.  We were thoroughly snowed in or I might have tried to drive him to A and E or something. 

    In fact the NHS did us proud.  The paramedics were with us within twenty minutes and were very pleased with his overall condition.  They were just worried about his head bump, of course.  After deliberation, they organised a subsequent visit from an ECP (new to us), an emergency care provider - or paramedic with the skills to deal with minor injuries.  He came within the hour, confirmed that my beloved seemed fine and quickly dealt with the scalp injury, saving us a terrible long visit to A and E somewhere far from home.  What a sensible idea, to send out these guys to deal with such lesser problems and save the great cost, to NHS and patient, of a visit to a hospital.  The Great Survivor would probably have refused to go anyway.

    We were left with instructions to watch for any signs of concussion and since then all has been well.

    His blood pressure had been (as usual) rather low, so maybe this added to his unsteadiness.  So we shall probably phone the GP to review his meds, some of which lead to lowering of blood pressure.

    Since it happened we have had nothing but concern and support from our neighbours and family which itself confirms we made a good decision moving here.  Lots of suggestions have been made re whether we should carpet the hard floors, but he feels safer on a firm surface.  My solution would be to get hold of a michelin man suit with rubber helmet and ask the Great Survivor to wear it at all times.  (Maybe some thick clothes at least).

    Until next time,

    Hazel

     

     

     

     

  • So it begins.  The cuts have now started to fall on us.  We haven't actually lost much service yet, but the the wheels are very definitely in motion now. 

    • The governments Spending Review contained the happy news that our sons Mobility Allowance (one of the few benefits he gets because he's classed as in a nursing home) will be 'equalised' (stopped) - so no money to run his wheelchair adapted van.
    • The rate cap on council spending means less money for social services so the whole of his care package has been selected for 'review' (he's very disabled so it's expensive - so he's been selected) and because the NHS fund part of his care they've got in on the act as well. (They're cutting generally by 30%, so we're braced for a big hit here.)
    • On top of this, one of the organisations which provides a large part of his care have decided to reduce part of his service anyway as it's difficult and they're obviously being put under some pressure to show they're cutting costs by the funders - so no more nursing help when he's at home.

    They may not have actually reduced his services that much yet but the stress of this on us is massive.  I can't remember when I last had a full nights sleep - even when he isn't here.  We're well aware we're being targetted for cuts because he has complex care needs and his care package is expensive - nurses don't come cheap - the service comissioning manager has said as much.  One painful meeting with a service provider had my wife in tears yesterday, another scheduled for tomorrow with Health and Social Services looks like it may be worse.  I've already had to apologise for 'being too aggressive'.  It feels very much like we're getting a good kicking and forced to say sorry if we object.  I think our Christmas has already been cancelled - at least we don't live in a council house - if we did, we might be looking for a nice warm stable as well.

    I'll probably not post much here from now on, partly because my mind's elsewhere and partly because this is an NHS site and the NHS are heavily involved in our problem - I really don't feel like they deserve my support.  If anyone does want to follow how things are going, I have my own blog at http://nedluddcarer.blogspot.com/

  • A novel cure for constipation!

    by Hazel2 on 23 November 2010

    My beloved, the Great Survivor, has struggled with an effect of Parksinsons, the slowing down of the digestive system resulting in constipation.  He used to consume lots of Movicol to help sort things out.

    Since living in our new home with a stairlift, it seems as if the journey downstairs on the lift works magic, and he is always ready to go by the time he gets to the loo!  What a pity that it would be difficult to patent this as a cure for other sufferers! 

    The improvement may also be due to a change of diet which may sound equally whacky!  We are following the recommendations of eating according to our blood group.  His is type O, (descended from the hunter gatherers on the African plains) and he is advised to avoid wheat and cow's milk products, and to concentrate on lean animal protein, vegetables and fruit.

    We did not eat huge amounts of wheat and cheese anyway, given his other diagnoses of diabetes (controlled by wife, as the GP describes it), and heart failure.

    Whatever the reason, the constipation is a symptom which is now under control.  Or should I say currently under control. 

    Hazel

  • They're at it again!

    Prior to the election the three main parties publicly sang the praises of carers - using us as an electioneering tool - only to dump on us from a great height once the coalition was in place.

    The latest sneaky dumping of carers comes in the social housing consultation announced today.

    Whatever any of us think of the ideas it contains in general there is one little inclusion that threatens carers in social housing if they are not the spouse of the person they care for and live in the same property, where the person they care for is the tennant.

    With the proposed new rules on inheritance of tennancy only a spouse can inherit a tennancy if the tennant dies - and this specifically  excludes many carers from remaining in their home if the person they care for is the tennant and this person dies.

    So you can give up your life for years, work 24/7 for a pittance in benefits, spend what free time you might get dealing with all the hassle and paperwork that any form of officialdom chooses to throw at you, collapse from exhaustion and stress as a result of always having to fight for what should be the automatic rights of the person you care for, go without personally in order to subsidise the needs of the person you care for, etc. etc. - but stay in your own home when the person you care for dies?  Don't be silly!

    So whilst dealing with grief and massive changes to life in general, carers will be expected to move from what may have been their home for decades - unless their local council has decided to independently employ slightly different rules - which for many councils is extremely unlikely; and even if they make that decision now they may change it in the future - so carers in social housing will have no security unless they are a) the spouse of the tennant, or b) the tennant.  Many parents, siblings, children, other relatives and friends, who have spent years as carers will have no right to remain in their home.

    Now we really know what the coalition think of us - and how much they value what we do - NOT!

    Carers would be well advised to read the consultation document and respond within the time frame - carers need the security of being able to remain in their home once their caring role ends - indeed they deserve that security and sure as hell we are the only ones who are going to point that out!

     

  • There are clearly differences between real carers and employed carers - not least the difference in income!

    But just the other day we had an experience that highlighted another difference - real carers do everything that needs to be done and employed carers do what they want - they certainly don't do some things which they feel are beneath them!

    We were out and about and headed to the disabled loo.  As we arrived an obviously employed carer was emerging from the loo - he ushered the person he was with into the loo and waited outside. The man he was with clearly had severe learning disabilities.    When the man came out the employed carer ushered him back in to wash his hands.  This done, he smiled sooooooooo sweetly as he held the door open for us to go in.

    Once inside we discovered why he had used the loo before the man he was looking after.  The seat was completely covered in urine - clearly the employed carer felt that cleaning up was beneath him and so had avoided the task by using the loo first.

    He was quite happy to leave the loo in this state for us - even smiling sooooooo sweetly as he held the door open for us!

    It really angered me that somebody who is paid to care for disabled person thinks that it is acceptable to leave the only disabled loo available in this state - as he held that door open for us he knew exactly what we would find inside!

    So this particular employed carer was something of a jobsworth who thought that cleaning up after such an incident was beneath him - obviously he must have passed his NVQ and expects that such mundane (and polite) tasks are no longer part of his job description!

     

     

  • Parkinson review

    by Hazel2 on 10 November 2010

    Just got back from seeing the Parkinson nurse for the twice-yearly check-up.  Althought the Great Survivor is doing well, it is amazing how many of his disabling problems stem from the disease, and also that there is so many sources of help which can be accessed:

    today we learned of a local exercise group which he could attend weekly to work on balance, strength, suppleness etc.  This is so helpful because of the increasing stiffness and awkwardeness.  (It would also give me a second little break in the week, as he already has one day at a day care centre).

    We also decided that having the meds before meals might just make all the difference, as madopar is inhibited in its action if taken with protein!  So if we start the day with a cuppa in bed and the first dose of madopar, he may find it easier to get up, and I may find its easier to help him!  (My back has been complaining).

    An amusing but disabling feature of the disease is the tendency for the person to always turn in a favoured direction, even when it doesn't make sense to do so.  As a result my beloved has often become entangled in walkers and trapped in corners.  Apparently we could get cue cards to point him in the right direction at those tricky corners which fox him!

    Also - as swallowing no longer happens automatically, he could have a little timer to prompt him to take a good swallow of saliva now and then, thus preventing the dribbles!

    We will be having a visit from an occupational therapist who will help with all these little things, and also think of gadget which might ease the way.

    It is exciting and pleasing to think what might be out there.  More of which in due course.

    Hazel

  • New home

    by Hazel2 on 03 November 2010

    In the past few weeks we have been de-cluttering before our major move and downsize.  Thanks to wonderful support all round, it has gone well.  Most remarkably, the Great Survivor has if anything been rejuvinated by the experience.  Not bad for someone approaching 91 with all his complex care needs!

    Moving from bungalow to two storey cottage we had to organise a stairlift.  The first time he tried it, he was thrilled by the upstairs view across country to the sea.  It made everything worthwhile.  As he now has a proper 'hospital' bed in his bedroom, he can now prop himself up to enjoy the view, and if ever he is bedridden, he will still be able to appreciate the outside world of nature.  On the groundfloor there is a small conservatory which even now is toasty warm whenever the sun comes out.   A perfect place for daytime dozing.

    Operating the stairlift is not easy with his Parkinsonian stiffness and arthritic hands, but the controls are all electric and I can help him using the remote if necessary.

    Friends we know from our new neighbourhood having been dropping in for coffee making me feel welcome and supported.

    Every morning we feel tremendous thankfulness for all of this.  We are mindful that it took money (our savings) to bring all this about, beyond the reach of many.

    Let us hope that we manage to maintaint this momentum.

    All for now,

    Hazel

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  • A little slice of heaven!

    by TheMother on 01 November 2010

    In my last post I related how I had challenged Virgnia Ironside during Cheltenham Literature Festival.

    Now I want to relate a little more about our visit to the festival and how it effects us, my daughter as a disabled person and myself as a carer.

    We've been going to Cheltenham Literature Festival for years - it's our annual escape/pilgrimage/chill out and we wouldn't miss it for the world.

    We've watched the festsival grow over the years and we've watched the organisers and staff as they've travelled along a learning curve in relation to disability.

    For example there is a room that is no longer used for events where their system of seating wheelchair users at the end of rows simply didn't work as the aisle was too narrow. it took a while, but eventually they came round to our way of thinking - wheelchair users needed to be in the front row in that room.  When my daughter was less well we were even able to request the front row corner where there is more space - if her pain levels or feet swelling were too much then we would sit on the floor together - and nobody batted an eyelid!  The floor space came into play in other rooms too - and in a couple of venues we have been able to get spare seats moved in so that my daughter could lie down across the seats with her head on my lap and often with cushions under her feet.

    Over the years they have listened to our feedback and changed their system for organising wheelchair spaces at events where general seating was unreserved. The system used to be that you went along to the room/marquee early and informed the staff of your need for a wheelchair space.  This worked reasonably well but it was time consuming as you had to whizz back and forth whilst still finding time to eat and use the loo etc.  Now when we book tickets the venue is automatically informed of the need for a wheelchair space - and the seat reserved for the carer, next to the wheelchair, even has your name on it!!!!  So no more yo-yo antics betwee events and necessities.

    So the festival is to be congratulated on the way they have addressed problems - some of which arise as new problems as the festival continues to expand.  Our visits get easier as the problems that arise are addressed - one day they'll even sort out the disabled loo - but the least said about that the better!!!!!!!

    But there is another aspect to our festival visits that is unique in it's ability to provide us with an experience that enhances our lives in an unexpected way - and this relates to the festival goers!

    The festival is the one place where we can feel totally accepted and able to do what we want without criticism, strange looks and stares or even the usual able-bodied objection to our presence.  Indeed other festival goers welcome our presence and welcome the daughter enthusiastically.

    We are never alone at the festival.  Its unique atmosphere encompasses everybody, festival goers chat, discuss the events they events they have been to, bemoan the fact that it only lasts for ten days etc. etc.  We meet people who might ignore us in other situations, we encounter examples of consideration that rarely happen elsewhere and we share experiences that have no barriers.

    This is all a far cry from the usual hassle we get from some sections of the public when we are out and about.  Indeed this was brought home to me last week.  We nipped into town for an hour or two and soon realised that this was a bad idea. It was half term and as we live in a sea-side town it was extremely busy.  But it wasn't just the amount of people that gave reason for the visit being a bad idea - it was the fact that so many of the tourists bring with them their prejudices and stares, their attitudes that we shouldn't be out in public and their general bad manners!  This doesn't apply to all of them of course - the two ladies sat near us in the cafe were wonderful - but so many others behave in such a way that you would think we were part of the tourist trail - and we are NOT a local attraction or a freak show!  Do these people not see wheelchair users and their carers where they come from? 

    I actually find it amazing that their stares and prejudices are so normal to them - I mean there they were with their holiday clothes (some of which would be better suited to the recycling bin because they are not even suitable for the jumble - I jest not - there were some REAL sights to be seen!) which often don't meet in the middle, obese men displaying their man boobs as they wander along the high st. without their shirts (maybe they've consigned the shirts to the recycling bin!!!!), pushing and shoving their way through, shouting at their kids and using language that I wouldn't even use for inadaquate doctors - and THEY have the cheek to stare at US !!! 

    Lesson one - avoid the town centre when the grockles are in!

    Lesson two - head back to the Cheltenham Literature Festival next year - we know where we're welcome and if we avoid places and people where we're not welcome it's THEIR loss not ours!

     

  • We know that many people do not know or understand who carers are and what they do. One common complaint that carers have told us, is that they, and their needs, are misunderstood or there is a lack of understanding and sensitivity  - at work, at school, by health professionals and so on. That's why we've pulled together a new bundle of content with information for people who are dealing with carers in all kinds of situations.

    The bundle includes general advice for anyone who knows a carer – or might one day become one. It also has a section aimed at health and social care professionals to help them better understand how, when and why they might come into contact with carers, and how they can help accordingly.

    We have also created new information about carers at work. Research shows that a significant proportion of carers are working, and this information will help employers, HR teams and all colleagues to find out about carers rights – and needs – in a working environment.

    There is also advice for teachers and lecturers, covering practical ways schools and universities can help and support carers, with a focus on the needs of young carers.

    We have also added advice specifically for police and prison officers, as well as advice for borders and immigration officials – all of whom may make a big difference in the lives of the individuals they come into contact with if they are armed with the right information.

    Take a look and as always, let us know what you think.

    Take care, 

    Patricia.

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The carers bloggers

Shelley121 looks after her husband who has bipolar disorder and Borderline Personality Disorder
Kendra27
is 27 and has been caring for her partner with mental health problems and gender identity disorder since 2006
The Mother feels that after 26 years as a carer, 'The Mother' is the only identity that she is really allowed
ned ludd, carer
has a grown-up son with learning and physical disabilities, who needs 24 hour care. He wants to change the culture of caring to focus less on bureaucracy and 'box-ticking'
Anthony1
has cared for his wife, who has Alzheimer's, for 13 years. He would like to hear from people in a similar situation
Wonderwoman1 cares for her husband, who has a back injury, and her 2 children who both have autistic spectrum disorder
Tony
aka User145767 is a full time carer for his daughter 'G' who has Downs Syndrome.

Scribbler John
 
cares for his Dad, who has had a stroke, and his Mum who has mobility problems
Hazel
  cares for her 90 year old husband who has Parkinson's disease and diabetes
Deborah Packenham
has a son with autism and is National Autistic Society (NAS) Branch Officer for Barnet
Sam S is a youth and community worker for The Princess Royal Trust for Carers
Kerry Page has 4 children between aged 20 and 10. Her youngest two boys are both severely disabled with Fragile X Syndrome and autism
Wendy1 is from Chill4usCarers

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