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Social Services Earmark £¼ Million Extra Funding To Support Carers

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News: Social Services Earmark £¼ Million Extra Funding To Support Carers

Tuesday, 15th June 2004
(PR 1402)

The 125,000 estimated unpaid carers across Lancashire who voluntarily look after a partner, relative or friend who is ill or disabled are to receive increased funding of around £250,000 to develop a range of support networks, projects and advocacy groups.

The announcement comes at the start of national Carers Week when the nation officially celebrates and recognises the invaluable and committed work carried out by the UK's 6 million carers.

There are currently over 125,000 carers in Lancashire, making up 10.9% of the population, from all sections of the community. There are also approximately 1,200 young carers who help look after their parents, siblings or older relatives who may have a physical or learning disability, a mental health problem or maybe struggling to cope with drug misuse or the trauma of domestic violence.

Lancashire Social Services works in partnership with other agencies and the voluntary sector in providing a range of services to support carers across the county. These include short breaks, residential short breaks, day care, domiciliary care and community support. There are also seven Carers projects and Young Carers Projects across the county, funded by social services, to provide locally based information and support to carers.

County Councillor Chris Cheetham, cabinet member for adult services and health, said:

"Carers play a vital role in caring for friends, neighbours and loved ones at home who may be ill, frail or disabled. It is because of their invaluable service and hard work that I pleased to announce this increased investment and commitment to develop further support schemes and advocacy groups in partnership with the voluntary sector."

A host of events are taking place across Lancashire over the next few days to mark national Carers' Week. Posters and information for carers will also be displayed in GP's surgeries and health centres across the area.

If you are a carer and would like more information about the support available, or would like to attend one of the events, contact Lancashire Social Services 01772 534371.

Notes for Editors

Facts:

  • One in six people of working age in the UK is a carer.
  • The total number of carers in the UK is over 6 million.
  • Around 3 in 5 people will be a carer at some point in their lives.
  • Each year there is a 6.6% chance of any one of us becoming a carer.
  • There are 51,000 young carers throughout the UK looking after their ill, elderly or disabled relatives.
  • Carers annually save the Exchequer over £57 billion, the equivalent of the cost of the NHS.
  • The numbers of carers providing support for 20 or more hours every week has increased from 1.5 million in 1990 to 1.9 million in 2000.
  • Half of carers in employment provide care for 100 hours a week as well as holding down a job.
  • 70% of those cared for are 65 years or over.
  • Carers Week is an annual event organised jointly by Carers UK, Crossroads Caring for Carers, The MS Society and The Princess Royal Trust for Carers.

For more information about Carers Week events visit www.carersweek.org

For further information please contact: Andrew Lynn on 01772 534372

andrew.lynn@ssd.lancscc.gov.uk


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