Support to look after someone
Carers make a vital contribution to society, giving their time and energy to caring for a family member, friend or neighbour. Many people with care and support needs rely on the person caring for them to help keep them independent in their own homes for as long as possible.
Your local council recognises and values the role of carers and sees them as vital in planning and providing support to the person they care for.
Looking after someone can be tiring and stressful, and can take up a lot of your time. It can often end up affecting your own health, wellbeing and independence.
And however much you care about the person you are looking after it is important that you look after yourself too. There are likely to be times when you need a break, or need some additional help and support from elsewhere to reduce the strain on you.
When people become carers, we want them to be able to access support when they need it, and before their caring roles become too much for them.
We therefore want to ensure that carers:
- have access to good information and advice
- are informed of their right to have a carer's assessment, either jointly with the person they look after, or separately
- are involved in planning and decision-making from the outset so that they and the person they care for have choice and control over their care and support
- can maintain a balance between their caring responsibilities and a life outside caring - this includes young carers
- can access a range of prevention and support services when they need it (for example, respite care/ carers breaks, access to carers groups, support systems and emergency care) to help sustain them in their caring role
- are supported to maintain their own health and wellbeing.
When the Care Act comes into effect in April 2015 there will be significant changes in the way in which your local council is expected to assess and support carers who look after an adult with a disability or health problem, and in how the council should decide whether someone is entitled to support as a carer.
In this section we provide information on the many ways in which you can get support, both for yourself and for the person you look after, if you are a carer living in Hammersmith and Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea or Westminster.
And if you want a quick summary of your support options then you can find it on the following pages:-
Other information and advice
If you would like to receive independent advice on your rights as a carer, benefits, housing, legal issues, accessing care and support, and a range of other issues, then you can contact the Westminster Advice Services Partnership (WASP).