Sky Sports presenter Jeff Stelling has delivered a stirring message of support to the 12,000 registered carers in Hartlepool to encourage them to ‘keep it up’ during the second lockdown.
In a newly recorded message, he told them: “I just wanted to speak to you in these difficult times back in lockdown. It is everyone’s worst nightmare.
"I know how difficult it must be for you guys who are out there looking after other people while trying to take care of yourselves at the same time.”
Jeff added: “I just want to say keep it up because you are doing absolutely fantastic, invaluable work. I do not know where we would be without your help.
"You have got all of my best wishes and all of my thanks.”
Group chief executive Christine Fewster said: “Jeff Stelling is a great ambassador for Hartlepool and our caring community, we are delighted to have him on board as our patron.”
Hartlepool Carers is an independent charity which supports people looking after loved ones with long term illnesses, disabilities, mental health needs and substance misuse.
A message of support has also been issued by Christine who said: “As we are now facing further lockdown restrictions we want to ensure our community are aware that we are here to support carers of all ages.
"Carers do not need to be in receipt of any carer benefits and can be providing care or emotional support to family members, friends or neighbours from one hour a week to 24/7 support.
“We know from local statistics that carers do not identify themselves until later in their caring journey and we want to ensure carers have the right support at the right time.”
Christine added: “If you are helping with shopping calls, medication, household tasks, personal care or emotional support then we may be able to help you in your caring role."
To register, visit https://www.hartlepoolcarers.org.uk/ or call (01429) 283095.
HOW CAN HARTLEPOOL CARERS HELP?
l Support is available on issues such as finances, respite and social opportunities, wellbeing support and training and education.
l In the run-up to Christmas, the group also offers virtual visits from Santa, bingo, Christmas crafts and festive afternoon teas.
Christine added: “Working in partnership with 1 Hart, 1 Mind, 1 Future we are offering young carers and children with additional needs and/or disabilities the chance for a personalised call which will include a letter from Santa himself.
"They are free for families but places are limited so we would encourage families to call us as soon as possible to book their places.
Virtual visits will take place on December 7, 8. 9 between 5pm-5.15pm and between 6.45-7pm.
To book a call from Father Christmas, call (01429) 283095 where staff can ‘take all the information we need to personalise your experience’ said Christine.