Caring can be tough, and lots of people don’t like to ask for help. If you’re finding caring difficult, a little extra help could make a world of difference.
What help can I get from social services?
As well as assessing the needs of the person you care for, your local council's social services department should also give you a carer’s assessment to see what you need and what might help you with your caring role.
You're entitled to a carer’s assessment if you regularly provide a substantial amount of care for someone. You can also get a carer’s assessment regardless of whether the person you care for is having their needs assessed.
The kind of help and support you could get includes:
- respite care to give you a break
- information on local carers support groups
- help with caring
- equipment to help you in your caring role.
You may also be entitled to a personal budget depending on the support needs identified in your assessment. A personal budget is the amount of money that the council has calculated will cover those needs.
How do I arrange a carer’s assessment and what will happen?
Contact your local social services department to request a carer’s assessment.
Contact your local council
You just need your postcode to find your local council
Before you have an assessment, think about the following questions and whether being a carer is having a significant impact on these or other things in your life.
- Are you getting enough sleep?
- Can you get out and do things by yourself?
- Are you eating well?
- Is your health being affected by caring?
- Can you cope with other family commitments?
- Is juggling work and caring difficult?
- Are you able to pursue your work or educational goals?
- Can you socialise and enjoy your hobbies in the way that you used to?
- Are there any other issues that may affect your ability to continue caring?
During the assessment, you’ll have a chance to talk about the care you provide and the impact it has on your life. The assessor will look at the support you get and whether other services could help you. They’ll also advise you on any benefits you’re entitled to and other sources of help.
Following the assessment, you’ll get a letter describing the support you could get and who will provide it.
What should I do next?
To get help from social services, call them and ask for a carer’s assessment. You could also ask for a needs assessment for the person you care for too.
We're here to help
We offer support through our free advice line on 0800 678 1602. Lines are open 8am-7pm, 365 days a year. We also have specialist advisers at over 140 local Age UKs.
Please help us be there for older people in need
By donating today, you could help us answer more calls to our advice line, campaign harder for older people’s rights and fair treatment and provide regular friendship calls to people who are desperately lonely.