National award for Roughton champion of older carers

A campaigner helping older carers across north Norfolk has won a national award.

Mary Granville-White from Roughton won the local campaigner title at the Sheila McKechnie Foundation Campaigner Awards at a special ceremony hosted by Channel 4 newscaster Jon Snow at St Martin-in-the-Fields off Trafalgar Square in London.

The awards recognise the outstanding contribution that a new generation of campaigners is making towards achieving social, environmental and economic justice both in the UK and abroad.

Mrs Granville-White's campaign is called Nothing About Us Without Us. She works in partnership with Age UK Norfolk, and aims to reward, support and recognise the contribution of older carers to society.

She has set-up and coordinated a befriending service and is using her personal experience to raise the profile of older carers living in rural Norfolk.

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'I am pleased to get the award but the people who really should be getting it are the older carers,' she explained.

'I have been a carer myself and found that you cannot talk about it. It is very personal to you. You are looking after a person you love and don't want people to think you are struggling.'

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Caring could be lonely and isolating added Mary, 65 a former radiographer who worked in cancer services at Glasgow, Nottingham and London, before moving to Norfolk 17 years ago.

She stressed that help was out there and said 'the message is - don't struggle alone.'

SMK chief executive Linda Butcher praised the work of campaigners 'working tirelessly to tackle the wrongs, abuses, injustices and inequalities in society.

'These inspiring and tenacious individuals prove that ordinary people can do extraordinary things,' she added.

Any older carers seeking help should call Age UK at Sheringham on 01263 823126. The Cromer office on Church Street is shutting on September 23, with people asked to contact the Sheringham centre in Cremer Street instead. People can also contact Mrs Granville-White on 01263 761419.

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