Calling all Norfolk carers - get in touch if you need help
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A service which provides practical an emotional support for carers is urging people across Norfolk to get in touch if they think they could benefit from some extra help.
Each year hundreds of people in Norfolk become unpaid carers for a family member or friend who, due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction, cannot cope without their support.
People often don't realise they are carers, they're a husband or wife, son, daughter, relation or friend. As a result, they often don't take up any of the support which is on offer.
Norfolk Carers - a formal partnership of local carers' support organisations, commissioned by Norfolk County Council and five NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups and led by Norfolk Carers Support - is reaching out to people across the county who are caring for someone and who might benefit from some extra help.
Kevin Vaughan from Norfolk Carers said: 'We have support workers in your area who can provide individual support, meeting at your home or at a community venue of your choice. They can help you with any issues and concerns you may have about your role as a carer, as well as introducing you to local groups and helping you access grants and respite.'
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Christine, 66, from South Norfolk cares for her husband who has Parkinson's, and a number of other health problems.
She said: 'The stress creeps up on you. You don't realise you're taking on more and more until you're forced to take stock.'
The crunch came for Christine when she had a panic attack caused by the strain of trying to support her husband's emotional health. Eventually, she found a lifeline during an open day in her local library where she met a Norfolk Carers support worker.
'It was the best thing that I could have done, finally I felt supported,' she said.
Through Norfolk Carers, Christine was able to access a learning grant, which allowed her to do a writing course. But, she says, more needs to be done to make carers aware of the information, advice and support available,
'Norfolk Carers is an excellent organisation but more carers need to know about them and get tailored help.'
Norfolk Carers is a one-stop service for carers in the county providing a range of services including practical and emotional support through a free Advice Line, Norfolk Carers Handbook, Time for You (breaks), Grants and Funding and Individual Support.
Get in touch
Call the team on 0808 808 9876, text only on 07497 002864, email email@example.com or visit the website www.norfolkcarers.org.uk, Facebook page NorfolkCarers or on Twitter @norfolkcarers.