By Davina Hyde
A town hall has committed to making lives better for carers.
Carer’s Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of the challenges unpaid carers face, and to recognise the contribution they make to family members and the community.
The Merton Carers Strategy 2021-2026 which has been developed with carers, was launched last week during Carer’s Week to demonstrate the council’s commitment to make lives better for carers in Merton.
The theme for the 2021 Carer’s Week is to “Make Caring Visible and Valued”, and ran from June 7 to June 13.
The partners involved with the council include South West London and St Georges Mental Health Trust, South West London Clinical Commissioning Group, Alzheimer’s Society, Carers Support Merton, Merton Mencap, Department of Work and Pensions, Age UK Merton and Healthwatch Merton.
During Carer’s Week there was a free programme of events dedicated to carers across the borough. The events included health and wellbeing virtual sessions, Merton Mencap online fun quiz, information about services available, and morning community walks and refreshments.
The new Mayor of Merton, Cllr Michael Brunt, who has dedicated his year to carers, said: “This year we know that carers across Merton are continuing to face challenges as a result of Covid-19.
“This Carer’s Week is our chance to say a big thank you to all the unpaid and family carers in the borough.
“We do recognise them for the valuable support they provide to others and hope that the activities during this week can bring them valuable support, information, joy and companionship.
“We know that carers don’t always choose or plan to be carers, and they can suddenly fall into the role of being a carer without any prior training or preparation.
“This is sadly true now more than ever before, due to the current health risks and lifestyle changes. That’s why we want to fully identify and support carers with their caring role, during these challenging times.
“Carer’s Week is our small contribution towards carers’ tireless commitment to others and show those who haven’t identified their role as yet, that they are still carers and that they have rights, entitlements and access to much-needed support.”
Carers UK report that since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, over half (58 per cent) of carers are more stressed and half are saying that it has had an impact on their health and wellbeing, and their ability to take time out.
To see Merton Council’s Carer’s Strategy 2021-2026, visit here
Please make cheques payable to “MSI Media Limited” and send by post to South London Press, Unit 112, 160 Bromley Road, Catford, London SE6 2NZ
Housing Secretary Robert Jenrick has encouraged everyone in the country who can afford to do so to buy a newspaper, and told the Downing Street press briefing recently: “A free country needs a free press, and the newspapers of our country are under significant financial pressure”.
So if you have enjoyed reading this story, and if you can afford to do so, we would be so grateful if you can buy our newspaper or make a donation, which will allow us to continue to bring stories like this one to you both in print and online.