Creative Breaks Aberdeenshire
A story by Quarriers
We provided grants directly to carers who live in Aberdeenshire, to plan an pay for a short break of their choice.
What Creative Breaks Aberdeenshire did
In Aberdeenshire Quarriers provides a Carers Service for both Adult and Young Carers. The Time to Live funding is open to Carers and has been advertised through presentations with partner organisations, through our Carers newsletter, through local authority website and on our Facebook page.
Our decision making panel initially started out as an e-panel, as we had hoped this would streamline the process, however they soon decided they would find it more beneficial to meet in person and work through the applications as a group. Therefore we changed from monthly e-panels to 6-weekly meetings at our centre in Inverurie.
When an enquiry or application is received, the Well being Worker for the local area (of the applicant) will contact the Carer to ask if they require support to complete the form. Carers can send in an application without needing to register with our Carers Service, it is the carer’s choice if they complete paperwork themselves or have support.
We received a letter from her and her mother saying it had been an invaluable support to her as not only had she been able to get a break doing something she was passionate about, she also made new friends at the stables and the stables offered her a volunteering role, allowing her to spend more time away from her caring role, and she also gets extra lessons free of charge.
On their return, they used the rest of their Time to Live grant to allow help from a Landscaper to make their own garden lower maintenance and to landscape an area creating their own mini Enchanted Forest retreat.
What Quarriers has learnedThe main thing the Quarriers Carer Support staff have learned are the more creative you can be with small pots of money the greater, and more sustainable, the benefit is to the Carer. The fund is open to all Carers, some who are not registered with our service, and we have found that often when completing an application they learn more about our support service and decide to register with us.
We have given presentations on our service and about the Short Breaks programme at partner organisations within a network of support agencies who also work with Carers, and we have found this attracts applications from new Carers who were not previously registered or aware of the Time to Live support.