Improve how we identify/recognize Carers with disability.

Improve how we identify/recognize Carers with disability.

Lets try to better identify and recognize our Carers living in remote/rural communities. Hello, my name is Gary France and I'm the research and engagement officer at connecting carers part of the Highland community care Forum. Our aim is to support carers throughout their caring journey. We also strive to ensure a better life for a Highland carers many which doing reside in more remote and rural areas. My idea is for us to try and better recognise our carers with disability and long term conditions. In Highland, we need more focus on unpaid carers who themselves are suffering from a disability and or a long-term condition. They have so many unique challenges dealing with this and it is made all the harder was residing in a remote rural community. The Carers Act of 2016 gives all adults and young carers in Scotland rights. This act was designed to not only listen to carers but to make supporting different areas more consistent and to prevent problems helping sustained caring relationships and protect carers health and wellbeing. Under this Act every carer has a right to a personalised plan to identify what is important to them. There is also the right to support to meet their eligible needs. Local authorities must consider whether that support should include a break from caring. It seems to me that we need to better improve our ability to identify this group of unpaid carers in Highlands, ensuring no one goes unnoticed as they conduct such demanding life affecting roles. To emphasise this, one carer from a focus group that I held recently told me: "I thought I was the only disabled carer. I reached the point where I can't do this anymore." We should continue to directly engage and listen to such stories. We must do all that we can to enable them to live a better quality of life alongside their caring role, while at the same time helping to reduce further risk of adverse impacts on their own health and wellbeing. Are these carers getting the support they so desperately need? Are they disadvantaged marginalised because of their postcode? Lack of sufficient affordable available respite is just one glaring example of how difficult providing support to such a group in our remote rural areas can be. How do we improve this?


Group activities are not always possible for disabled unpaid carers so support on an individual basis should also be made available. Proper recognition, by the NHS, health and social care professionals is also required and training should be provided where it is felt it is needed. Unpaid carers get little or no recognition or training, compared to professional cares yet they do the same work, yet often for longer times. They most definitely need much more recognition, rewards and support.

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