Swindon charity to hold online event for Carers Rights Day

By Jessica Durston - 17 November 2021

CharityCommunity

Swindon Carers Centre will hold on online event focusing on mental health and wellbeing for unpaid carers to mark Carers Rights Day.

The charity says Carers Rights Day is a national day, set aside to raise awareness – making sure that people caring unpaid for a family member, partner or friend understand their rights and are better able to access the help and support they are entitled to.

This year’s event, on Friday, 26 November, will include a Q&A session giving unpaid carers in Swindon the chance to question health and social care leaders.

Swindon Carers Centre says as the pandemic continues, many unpaid carers have seen the needs of the person they care for increase, creating many additional pressures.

Experts and panelists at the event will reflect on what is deemed a worrying trend towards poorer mental health for unpaid carers, many of whom have felt isolated and unable to gain access to respite breaks during covid-19.

The event also aims to acknowledge and discuss the unique challenges of caring for someone with a mental health condition, including the impact this can have on unpaid carers’ physical and mental health.

Speakers will include Rebecca Harrison Co-chair of Swindon SEND Families Voice, who will open the event by sharing her own caring story. Rebecca will be followed by Alexandra Luke, Associate Director for Operations, BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire, at Avon and Wiltshire Mental Health Partnership, and Hazel Howe, CEO at Swindon & Gloucestershire MIND.

Panelists also joining Swindon Carers Centre for the Q&A session will include:

·       Robert Buckland, QC MP, Swindon South

·       Justin Tomlinson, MP, Swindon North

·       Cllr Brian Ford, Cabinet Member for Adult Health and Social Care, Swindon Borough Council

·       David Haley, Corporate Director – Children’s Services, Swindon Borough Council.

·       Alison Barker, Corporate Director – Adults, Health & Housing, Swindon Borough Council.

 

Unpaid carers in Swindon are now being encouraged to submit questions for this Q&A session, as well as to voice their thoughts and experiences. Questions can be submitted in advance by emailing anne.saunders@swindoncarers.org.uk.

Swindon Carers Centre CEO Susanna Jones said: “Many carers do not see themselves as carers, simply as someone helping or supporting a partner, relative or friend.

“However, we know that this support is vital for some of our most vulnerable members of the community – and that caring through the Covid-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on carers’ mental health and wellbeing.

“Whether you are new to caring or you have been caring for a while, we want you to get involved in our Carers Rights Day. We hope that carers in Swindon will take up the opportunity to listen in to key decision makers, and to have their say, helping us to create a community where carers are truly recognised, valued and supported.”

The two-hour event will start at 10am.

Those wishing to join, can use the following Eventbrite link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/carers-rights-day-tickets-190308035457

Members of the public should include their email addresses to receive an invitation to join - which will include joining instructions and the full agenda.

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