A NEW campaign to offer support to carers is being launched by Cwm Taf University Health Board together with Merthyr Tydfil and Rhondda Cynon Taff councils.
The campaign will raise awareness of the reasons why people become carers but also why they may not think of themselves as carers – some see themselves as a parent, child, wife, partner or friend.
The 2011 Census showed there are 29,640 carers in Rhondda Cynon Taf and a further 7,427 in Merthyr Tydfil – more than 37,000 across Cwm Taf.
A total of 11,752 carers in Cwm Taf provide more than 50 hours of care every week. This has increased by 9% in Merthyr Tydfil and 7% in Rhondda Cynon Taf since the 2001 Census. This shows that Cwm Taf carers are providing more substantial care, which can often impact on their health.
The campaign will also raise awareness of the support and advice available to all carers. The type of support they may need may depend on their individual circumstances, for example, someone with a mental health problem may need emotional support, whereas someone who cares for a disabled or frail person may need assistance with practical skills, hygiene or lifting skills.
A young carer who looks after their parent, sibling or grandparent may need help and advice about continuing their education, training, employment or social development.
Maria Thomas, Cwm Taf University Health Board’s carers champion and an independent board member, said: ”Carers often ignore their own needs, as they often put the person they care for first. This often prevents them from seeking professional help and support.
“For this reason, we are looking to identify carers in order to provide them with appropriate and timely information, support and advice that can help them in their caring role.”
For more information about how you can get help, support or advice please contact:
Cwm Taf University Heath Board: David Watkins on 01443 744844 David.Watkins@wales.nhs.uk
Merthyr Tydfil Council: Elaine James on 01685 353907 Elaine.James@vamt.net
Rhondda Cynon Taff Council: Anne Morris on 01443 668814 Anne.Morris@rctcbc.gov.uk