Person Centered Holiday Fund for Carers
A story by Unity
We provided grants directly to carers living in South Ayrshire.
What Person Centered Holiday Fund for Carers did
We visited other groups within the Community to make them aware of the fund. We also advertised through various newsletters. Posters displayed in many social care buildings. We advertised on our Facebook. Word of mouth from carers is always a great way.
We have an eligibility criteria which the carer must fit. We have an application form that all carers must complete and we also support them with this process. The award panel will decide if the grant is to be awarded. The panel will assess the application on a priority basis and overall benefit for the carer.
A also struggles with managing the household duties but gets support from the carers centre and housing association. A reported to the carers centre that she would like to take a break away but is really unsure on where to go and how to book it. A mother is too old and does not really want to leave the family home. Some carers where taking a break together and we arranged for them to discuss with A the possibility of her joining them. They all decided it was a good idea and booked the trip.
We explained to A that she would have the benefit of some company but could do her own thing at times. A was nervous when going but we spoke to her several times and also spoke to the carers that were going with her. When A came back from the break she was over the moon with the break. She explained how good it was to get away from the stresses of living on her own and also trying to support her mother. A said she would love to go on another trip and cannot wait to arrange it.
Miss A’s brother has ADHD and is on the Autistic Spectrum. He suffers anxiety with public transport and would stand at the bus stop until he felt comfortable to get on the bus. Miss A is now able to take mum to all her appointments and this has given mum a better quality of home life. She is not out the house as long and not as tired because of this. Miss A’s brother is attending college as she can take him and pick him up as well.
Miss A also has a part time job. She works 2 nights night shift in a care home. She also volunteers as a befriender for other young carers. She would not have been able to sustain all this without the lessons and passing her driving test.
AP applied for a grant for a laptop which he was successful in receiving. This has been great for not alone just AP but for the whole family as they have relatives who live further afield, they frequently use Skype/Facebook to keep in touch now whereas before it was months on end contact through post. AP also uses the laptop to give himself some chill-out time and time to catch up with school work, he has also been using the laptop to research questions on his brother’s condition which he is very keen to learn more information on.
What Unity has learnedWhen we make an award and the carer comes into the office and talks about the break positively staff get a massive lift from this and this helps lift moral within the local office. As South Ayrshire has some remote areas it can be difficult to spread the word and we need to keep working at this.
Many carers who did not know about what we did at the carers centre and only accessed the short break fund to start with are now accessing many different activities at the centre.