Carers told to take a break by Renfrewshire Council

Carer’s in Renfrewshire are being told to take a break after the local authority set aside £200,000 to pay for a new home-based respite care service.

Respite care gives carers a break from the daily routine of looking after loved ones who have long-term health problems or disabilities. It allows them the chance to have a night out, a weekend off or a short holiday.

renfrewshire-carersAs the name suggests, the new home-based service allows the person who is being cared for to stay in their own home while their carer takes a well earned rest. The person who is being cared for needs to be over 65 to access the new service but the carer can be any age.

Respite care – away from the home – is available to all carers who look after someone who is either over 16 years old, or who is a disabled child, and needs regular help with their personal and social care. There may be a charge in some cases.

It’s estimated that there are over 20,000 carers in Renfrewshire.

Councillor Iain McMillan, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Social Work, Health and Wellbeing Policy Board, said, “Carers do an amazing job and our aim is to provide them with as much help and support as possible. Being a carer is a massive commitment and for many it’s more than a full time job.

“The council recognises someone has to care for the carers. The help and support we provide to people with physical and learning disabilities, has to extend to the people who look after them. This includes addressing the impact that being a carer has on their jobs, education, health and leisure time.

“We asked carers what we could do to help and the new respite care at home service is what they came up with. It allows people to recharge their batteries and continue in their caring role.

“Supporting carers is critical so we’ve allocated £200,000 from the Renfrewshire Change Fund Partnership to provide this new service. Now it’s there, we’re telling carers to take a break!”

The council is also encouraging anyone who regularly provides a substantial amount of care to someone else to have a carer’s assessment done. A carer’s assessment looks at:
*       How being a carer affects the person
*       How much care they can realistically provide without it adversely affecting their life beyond being a carer
*       What help they may need.

Anyone who cares for someone over the age of 65 years old, can ask for free, home-based respite care. More information about the service is available on  0141 207 7777 or  0300 300 1199.

Information about both home-based respite care and general help and advice for carers is available from the Renfrewshire Carers Centre on 0141 887 3643 and the council’s website