The selfless work of Leeds’s dedicated network of unpaid carers is being recognised as the city marks this year’s Carers Week.
A national celebration, Carers Week runs from June 12 until June 18 and aims to celebrate the huge contribution of Leeds’s 72,000 unpaid carers, who provide around 1.5million hours of care every week.
To mark the week in Leeds, Leeds City Council and the NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are working together to make three major announcements.
The Leeds Carers Partnership have produced the Leeds Commitment to Carers which sets out what being the best city in the UK for carers would look like.
Anyone can sign-up including health and care agencies, employers, local shops, banks, supermarkets, voluntary organisations and faith groups, and every high street, community service and leisure facility will be able to play their part in making sure they are accessible to carers by connecting them to the help and support available.
Through a partnership with Carers UK, Leeds City Council will also be making a free range of digital products available for the city’s carers.
Using a special access code, carers will be able to take part in e-learning course, download a specially-designed app called ‘Jointly’ and access a range of on-line information guides designed to give carers the information they need.
The council has also secured umbrella membership of the Employers for Carers network, giving the authority access to all the latest knowledge and resources about supporting carers balancing work and care. The council’s membership also means that any employer with less than 250 employers can also have free membership and will also be able to use the network resources.
Heléna Herklots CBE, speaking on behalf of Carers Week, said:
“Carers Week is a fantastic way to celebrate the vital contribution made by the 6.5 million people in the UK who care, unpaid, for a disabled, older or ill family member or friend.
“Caring can be a rewarding experience but without the right support many carers find themselves facing financial hardship, ill-health, emotional stress, relationship breakdown and isolation”
Val Hewison, chief executive at Carers Leeds, said:
“We recognise that Carers Week is just one week of the year for the 72,000 unpaid family carers in Leeds, but this is a key time to raise awareness of the crucial role they play in keeping their loved ones well and supported.
“It is also a great time to highlight the breadth of support we offer carers at Carers Leeds. This Carers Week we hope to reach even more carers through a programme of events that includes a trip to Scarborough, information for new carers at a big event on Briggate, loads of information stands in supermarkets across Leeds and wellbeing sessions to unwind and relax – an essential for all carers.
We are so proud to be part of Leeds Commitment to Carers – It’s what we do!”
Councillor Rebecca Charlwood, Leeds City Council’s executive member for health, wellbeing and adults, said:
“Leeds has been recognised nationally for its integrated approach to supporting carers. If we are to be the best city in the UK for health and wellbeing we need to be the best for carers and these three announcements in Carers Week show that Leeds City Council and the NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Groups are fully committed to carers in Leeds”.
For more information about any of the above, please contact Ian Brooke-Mawson, Strategic Commissioning Manager, Leeds City Council and NHS Leeds Clinical Commissioning Groups on 0113 384183 or at firstname.lastname@example.org