£500,000 bid to make lives a little easier for Hartlepool's dedicated carers

Health bosses are bidding to gain £500,000 of government cash to improve respite services for carers in Hartlepool.

Monday, 23rd September 2019, 3:46 pm
Updated Tuesday, 24th September 2019, 9:52 am
Hartlepool Civic Centre

It came as councillors praised the work of carers and linked organisations in Hartlepool, while officers revealed a ‘young carers card’ is being developed in the town.

This came as part of plans to improve the support for carers in the town, as Hartlepool Health and Wellbeing Board approved the adoption of the all age carers strategy.

Danielle Swainston, council assistant director of joint commissioning, said a lot of work has been done and is continuing to be done to support carers.

She said: “There was quite a lot of discussions about some carers not realising that they’re carers or they don’t want to be identified as carers, they don’t want to be identified as anything different.

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“There is going to be work with Hartlepool Carers about the development of a young carers card, so carers can then share that with school provision, health provision, so that people are aware that they are young carers.

“A large proportion of carers do not identify themselves firstly as carers, they are husbands, or wives or friends or daughters, family.”

She also added work was being done to improve the support to young carers transitioning from primary to secondary education.

Christine Fewster, from Hartlepool Carers, revealed they are currently bidding for funding alongside the local authority to help provide respite for carers.

She said: “With regards to the carers respite breaks we’ve recently submitted a bid to the government for potentially £500,000 to look at developing carer respite services.

“We’ve put that bid in alongside the local authority and also many other partners that are involved because as an organisation we recognise it is really important that carers get that break.”

She added they should get feedback for phase two of the bid by the end of October when they would consult with carers over what services they would want.

Coun Stephen Thomas also welcomed the work being done to support carers in the town and improve the help they get.

He said: “I am aware there are an awful lot of pressures on carers young and old and it is a massive, massive strain both mentally and physically.

“We have a real duty and responsibility to make sure the carers get the support they need to undertake that very important role that they do.”

Council leader Coun Shane Moore backed the carers strategy, adding all organisations and bodies have to work together to provide support.