Additional help for unpaid carers of adults
We recognise that COVID-19 is a very challenging time for unpaid carers. Devon County Council have responded by providing additional funding to ‘Special Schemes’ to help support you. These are independent to the main carer support offer and provide targeted help to address specific areas of concern.
There are currently three ‘Special Schemes’:
1. Hospital Services: providing additional support to carers when they or their cared for person has been admitted to hospital for an overnight stay. Referrals are made up to 10 days of the date of discharge. This service has been greatly expanded to reflect the additional demands currently being placed on the NHS.
2. Time For You: delivers a low-cost sitting service, by providing volunteers to spend time with your loved one whilst you take time out. Restrictions due to Covid put this trial service on hold, it is now restarting.
For more information about the schemes above visit www.devoncarers.org.uk or phone our Helpline 03456 434 435
3. Carers Break Fund: this new scheme has changed and now all 18yrs+ carers of adults, can now apply.
Two options are available: both provide a small amount of money to enable carers to enjoy an activity, hobby or anything else that helps them to get time out from their caring role.
What are the options?
• Option 1 – Carers Break fund: is available to carers who might not have been able to access funds before as they have not been identified as having an ‘eligible need’ during their carers assessment (Health and Wellbeing Check)
• Option 2 – Carers Break fund (Covid relief) works in the same way as option 1 but is available to carers who have been identified as having an ‘eligible need’ in their carers assessment and are struggling as a result of COVID-19 restrictions, without the need for further assessment.
With either fund you will receive a minimum payment of £50 which may increase to £100 or more depending on your caring circumstances. Access to the these are whilst funds permit and so early application is advised.
What can I use the money for?
It can be used on anything that will give you a break from your caring role (not for items for your cared for person, that should be provided by the NHS or Social Services).
Carers have already benefitted from the new fund which has enabled them to:
• Participate in a wellbeing activity: yoga, mindfulness and exercise
• Pursue a hobby; purchasing garden tools, plants or buying art and crafts materials
• Undertake a relaxing activity; reading, making a jigsaw or listening to music
• Help to towards buying technology; a smart phone or tablet enabling carers to join in with online activities and chat to family and friends virtually
• Or, even to help towards a day trip or night away
How to apply
You must be aged 18 and over and caring for an adult who lives in the Devon County Council area. You must be registered with Devon Carers which you can do using https://old.devoncarers.org.uk/self-referral-form/ chatting online or by phoning our Helpline. Simply contact us and we will send you an application form to complete and return.
If you are interested in applying for the funds or to find our more information, click on the ‘Ask’ button on www.devoncarers.org.uk or call our Helpline 03456 434 435, Monday to Friday 8am-6pm and Saturday 9am-1pm.