Volunteers want official recognition

Carers contribute an average of 18 hours of
voluntary and community work per month, saving the country up to
£1bn a year, a new survey has revealed.

Adding Value: Carers as Drivers of Social Change report by
Carers UK also finds that nearly one in 10 carers put in more than
30 hours’ volunteering a week on top of their caring

says carers of all ages and backgrounds get involved in voluntary
activities such as running local self-help groups, sitting on NHS
and local authority advisory bodies, raising money for charities
and helping with care services for disabled people.

However, nearly two-thirds of
carers feel their role and contribution isn’t properly recognised.
Carers UK has called for the government to increase the invalidity
care allowance to support carers better.

Burstow MP, Liberal Democrat spokesperson for older people, said it
was a “scandal” that carers are not being recognised for their
contribution to society. “Labour made a manifesto commitment to
create a fund to support carers, yet they have failed to deliver on
this promise.”

report recommends local authorities and health services work closer
together to prevent carers being asked for the same information and
calls on local authorities to regularly consult carers about
services, provide them with training when necessary and hold
meetings at appropriate times and with sufficient

survey was released to coincide with the start of Carers Week from
10-16 June. Events include the launch of The Local, Your Focal
campaign by Crossroads – Caring for Carers to highlight ways in
which the local pub can bring communities together. Carers UK has
also launched a carers’ register.

– For
the executive summary of Adding Value: Carers as Drivers of
Social Change
visit www.carersonline.org.uk
  For more on Carers Week
visit www.carersweek.org/events


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