This week marks Carers Week in the United Kingdom. Each year it is held to raise awareness of carers and to recognise the work that they do. This year, the campaign is looking to develop Carer Friendly Communities, in which those who care for others are appreciated and looked after, as they too have their needs.
According to statistics, 3 in 5 people in the United Kingdom will work as a carer during their lifetimes. Carers are classed as those who regularly look after someone who is sick, elderly or disabled. They can either be a family member or friend who either cares around their job, or gives up their job if the person requires full-time care. Caring can also be a profession, and carers can have multiple people who they are paid to look after on a weekly basis, or they can be paid to look after one person full-time.
The length of time someone is classed as a carer can vary, for some the care required is only a few months, however others may require lifelong care. While caring can be a positive experience, many find it isolating, stressful and it can have an impact on their social lives and expenses.
This is why the campaigners behind this year’s Carers Week are aiming to create Carer Friendly Communities, who recognise and value the work that unpaid carers carry out on a daily basis. They want to educate people on what is included in a carer’s routine.
They are also aiming for local services to make life slightly easier for these unpaid carers, who often struggle with additional stresses caused by their time spent caring. If they have left or changed jobs due to being required at home, they will often have to fill in extra paperwork to document their changes of circumstance. If they become ill they may struggle to attend an appointment at their local doctors, as someone else is now entirely reliant on them.
By building Carer Friendly Communities, some of these stresses could be reduced. Carers Week aims to work with local services and systems to lift some of the barriers currently facing carers. They hope that employers who are more informed about unpaid carers will adapt their policies to become more ‘Carer Friendly’. They also aim to get doctors surgeries to offer alternative appointments to carers who find it difficult to visit due to their responsibilities.
NCC offers many care-based courses, both with a general focus on care or courses that take an in-depth look at different types of care situations and how to react to these. General courses such as our Health and Social Care Diploma Level 2 or Level 3 benefit those who are looking to work in the Care industry. Both courses give learners the knowledge and understanding necessary to understand the role of a Carer, how to safeguard effectively, how to support use of medication in a care setting and how to support individuals with specific communication needs, amongst other vital bits of knowledge.
We also offer more specific and focused courses that may be of help to some carers, who are caring for someone with an ailment they would like to increase their knowledge on. Popular courses include Positive Dementia Care, which is ideal for those who want to know the facts on dementia and how to improve the daily life of those with dementia. Autism Awareness is a topic that many carers are keen to gain more knowledge on, as it such a diverse condition. This courses enables the learner to become familiar with the different approaches to autism, gain a better awareness of how to obtain a diagnosis and also gives practical suggestions when working with autistic individuals.