Good Practice

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Good Practice

Good practice guide for supporting carers in Wales

This good practice guide, funded by Welsh Government, is designed to be used by regional partnership boards, local authorities, local health boards and third sector organisations in Wales to support the identification and commissioning of good services for unpaid carers.
Area of Care: 
Mental Healthyoung carersSpecialist servicesDay centreHospitalPrimary CareSecondary CareDementia care
Outcomes: 
PreventionSchoolsWellbeingIntegrationHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carersCarers in employment
I work in: 
Health careSchoolsCarers servicesSocial careEducationCommissioning
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carersYoung carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Wales
Date Revised: 
Wednesday, June 5, 2019 - 13:00
Body: 
To develop this guide, Carers Trust Wales has undertaken substantial desk research including analysis of academic and other notable publications. Additionally, we have undertaken active research, including in-depth interviews with carers services across Wales, to develop a deeper understanding of what is working well. 
 
Through this approach we have identified evidence-based criteria which can be used to understand the quality and appropriateness of carers services. These criteria recognise that regardless of the service model used, it is essential that all services commissioned to support carers: 
  • Meet obligations under the Social Services and Wellbeing (Wales) Act 2014 
  • Deliver the Wellbeing Objectives under the Wellbeing of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 
  • Deliver against the Ministerial priorities for carers 
  • Adequately reflect carers’ views, experiences and preferences. 

Download English language version PDF iconGood Practice Approaches to Supporting Carers in Wales 

Download Welsh language version PDF iconDulliau arfer da wrth gefnogi gofalwyr yng Nghymru

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PDF icon Good Practice Guide to Supporting Carers in WalesPDF icon Dulliau arfer da wrth gefnogi gofalwyr yng Nghymru
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Good Practice

Supporting Students with Caring Responsibilities: A Resource for Further Education Providers to Help Young Adult Carers Succeed In Further Education in Wales

A Wales-specific, user-friendly resource, this toolkit was developed in partnership with Learning and Work Institute to increase awareness of student carers and their specific needs, promote existing good practice from colleges and carers services and offering expert recommendations.
Area of Care: 
Mental HealthSpecial education needs
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Carers servicesCarers involvementInformation and adviceCommissioning for young carersEducation
I work with: 
Young adult carersYoung carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Wales
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, October 9, 2018 - 10:45
Body: 

Student Carers in Further Education

In 2015 Carers Trust worked with the National Institute for Adults Continuing Education (NIACE) to develop a practical resource for colleges. In 2017 Carers Trust Wales and Learning and Work Institute worked together to develop Supporting Students with Caring Responsibilities: A Resource for Further Education Providers to Help Young Adult Carers Succeed in Further Education in Wales, drawing on good practice from colleges and carers centres across Wales. 

This interactive resource has been designed to generate momentum for identifying and supporting student carers within colleges. We hope that it will inspire and assist all colleges to build on good practice to develop their own approaches to identifying and supporting this student group. In doing so, this will ensure that students who are caring for others - students whom, in many instances, will have overcome very difficult circumstances and have aquired valuable transferable skills along the way - are able to reach their potential and successfully achieve their educational aims. 

Feedback

Carers Trust Wales will be contacting colleges across Wales in September 2018 for feedback on the implementation on the toolkit.

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PDF icon Supporting Students with Caring Responsibilities: A Good Practice GuidePDF icon Cefnogi Myfyrwyr a chanddynt Gyfrifoldebau Gofal: Canllaw Arfer Da
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Good Practice

Empowering Professionals to support Young Carers (EPYC)

Thanks to funding provided by the European Commission through the Erasmus+ programme, a group of organisations from Germany, Scotland, Ireland, Italy and Austria are working to find new ways to support young carers.
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Carers servicesEmploymentSocial careEducationCommissioning
I work with: 
Young adult carersYoung carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Scotland
Date Revised: 
Monday, April 30, 2018 - 13:30
Body: 

About the Empowering Professionals to support Young Carers (EPYC) project

Thanks to funding provided by the European Commission through the Erasmus+ programme, a group of organisations from Germany, Scotland, Ireland, Italy and Austria are working to find new ways to support young carers.

Each country involved in the EPYC project will develop a new tool, which we hope will help youth professionals - like teachers, social worker or youth workers - to better support young carers.

The tools aim to aid in the identification of young carers, to allow practitioners to assess the situation of young and young adult carers, including measuring the level and impact of the care burden, and to allow practitioners to develop an action plan to address issues adversely affecting young and young adult carers.

We will then trial the tool to see how it can help make Scotland a better place for young and young adult carers to grow up in.

Why is this project happening?

Young and young adult carers carry out, often on a regular basis, significant caring tasks and assume a level of responsibility which would not usually be associated with their age group.

Although research has provided clear evidence that heavy caring responsibilities can result in emotional difficulties, health problems, social exclusion and limited opportunities for social and leisure activities, professional support services are lacking in many EU countries.

Who is involved in the project?

The two year EU funded project started in August 2016  involving a strategic partnership of six European organisations, namely Carers Trust Scotland (UK), Diakonisches Werk Berlin Stadtmitte e.V. (Germany), Care Alliance Ireland (Ireland), Anziani e non solo (Italy), ARC ORK (Austria) and IPS Versari Macrelli (Italy).

The kick off meeting, hosted by the leading partner, Diakonisches Werk Berlin Stadtmitte e.V., was held in Berlin on 12 September 2016.

What can you do now?

Expected EPYC project outcomes

In the course of the project, intermediate expected results include:

  • An increased capacity of organisations to identify young and young adult carers.
  • An increased knowledge of promising or successful experiences and practices from other European countries.
  • An increased awareness of the challenges faced by young and young adult carers in the different local contexts involved directly or indirectly in project activities.

The outcome of the project is the improved expertise in this field and professional stakeholders having the knowledge to develop support services for young and young adult carers and work with relevant sectors to improve support.

If you are interested to know more about the EPYC project  contact:

  • Louise Morgan, Carers Trust Scotland, Young Carers Development Manager Working with the SYCSA. 
  • Paul Traynor, Carers Trust Scotland, Policy and Campaigns Officer (Young and Young Adult Carers). 
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Good Practice

Older Carers Toolkit

This toolkit is targeted at commissioners of health and social care in England and aims to highlight the needs of carers aged over 60 and to show tried and tested ways they can be supported.
Area of Care: 
Mental HealthPhysical illnessAlcohol MisuseSubstance MisuseSpecial education needsSpecialist servicesPrimary CareSecondary CareAcute CareDementia care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health careCarers servicesSocial careCommissioning
I work with: 
Adult carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
England
Date Revised: 
Friday, April 27, 2018 - 13:15
Body: 

This toolkit is targeted at commissioners of health and social care in England and aims to highlight the needs of carers aged over 60 and to show tried and tested ways they can be supported.

It shines a spotlight on particular issues most likely to impact on older carers. This can help inform commissioning to properly and most cost-effectively support them. It will also help commissioners fulfil duties to prevent, reduce and delay needs and to support older carers under the Care Act 2014.

Further information

Download the toolkit PDF iconCaring About Older Carers (PDF 307KB)

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Good Practice

Identification of carers in GP practices

Not enough carers are likely to be receiving the support they need or are entitled to. One of the main obstacles to carers getting the right support is identification – both self-identification and identification by health professionals.
Area of Care: 
Primary Care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary care
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carersYoung carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Friday, April 27, 2018 - 12:45
Body: 


There are an estimated seven million unpaid carers in the UK, however not enough carers are likely to be receiving the support they need or are entitled to. One of the main obstacles to carers getting the right support is identification – both self-identification and identification by health professionals.


Self-identification can be problematic as many carers, understandably, see their relationship with the person they care for as one of being a parent, child, neighbour, friend or partner and don’t recognise 'carer' as a term they would use.


This is why identification by health professionals becomes even more important.


Carers Trust’s Raising the voice of carers project works with local Network Partners and aims to give carers the tools and confidence to campaign on issues that matter to them.

Further information

Read our resource –  PDF iconIdentification of Carers in GP Practices (PDF 434 KB).

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Good Practice

Carers Trust ADVANCE mentoring scheme

ADVANCE was an innovative volunteer mentoring programme developed by Carers Trust for chief executives of Network Partners in The Carers Trust Network across the UK. It ran from 2015 to 2018 and is backed by materials for you to download (all available below).
I work in: 
Carers services
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carersYoung carersParent carersSibling carersFamilies
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Wednesday, March 21, 2018 - 09:00
Body: 

ADVANCE Mentoring Programme – introduction/overview

Is good leadership about:
  • Knowing all the answers, pretty much all of the time?
  • Coming up with clear-cut solutions to complex problems?
  • Keeping your thoughts to yourself and not being swayed by other people?
Not so, according to a three-year impact study of ADVANCE, an innovative volunteer mentoring programme developed by Carers Trust for chief executives of Network Partners in The Carers Trust Network across the UK – local charities delivering a range of services addressing the needs of unpaid carers and the people they care for. The traditional ‘heroic’ approach to leadership was considered by participants in the 12-month programme to be much less effective than the ability to:
  • Ask searching questions.
  • Listen carefully to different views.
  • Take time to reflect before acting.
Participating in ADVANCE enabled board members and chief executives to re-interpret their leadership role to fit a drastically changing world – a world where flexibility trumps rigidity every time. 
 
There is much to be learned from the experience of senior leaders who learned ‘on the run’ to enhance their confidence and skills in order to regain control of their lives and organisations. 
 
The independent impact study of the ADVANCE mentoring programme, commissioned by Carers Trust and carried out by Marsaili Cameron and Sheila Marsh from PublicServiceWorks, developed materials to support chief executives, board members and others to work separately and together in a focused way to ensure effective strategic leadership.
 
Findings from this study fed in regularly over three years to the ADVANCE mentors (senior volunteers from a wide range of backgrounds) and to the Carers Trust design team for the programme. This process enhanced the learning culture that characterised ADVANCE, supported by the work of Lead Mentor, Hilary Samson-Barry.
 

What materials are available, and how might you use them?

Want a summary of the impact of the ADVANCE mentoring programme?Deep Learning for Hard Times

  • PDF iconDeep Learning for Hard Times (PDF, 219KB) – a booklet summing up the impact of the ADVANCE mentoring programme.
  • Info cards – to support implementing the learning in similar local charities:
    • PDF iconADVANCE Cards A-C  (PDF, 190KB) – focusing on building sustainability, strengthening governance and developing partnership/collaboration – the three top issues tackled through the ADVANCE mentoring programme.
    • PDF iconADVANCE Cards 1-5  (PDF, 351KB) – focusing on transferable skills and practical insights gained by participants in the ADVANCE mentoring programme.

Want to make a presentation or work with a group?

Want to know more about the ADVANCE mentoring programme impact study and see the evidence behind the summary?

Want to discuss ADVANCE further?

If you would like to hear more about the context of  the ADVANCE mentoring programme and its introduction, email Carers Trust.
 
If you would like to know more about the methodology of the impact study, email Sheila Marsh or Marsaili Cameron of PublicServiceWorks.
Downloads: 
PDF icon Deep Learning for Hard Times (plus see more downloads below)
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Good Practice

Improving Health Outcomes for Older and Young Adult Carers

In 2011 Carers Trust was selected by People’s Health Trust to coordinate the delivery of health related projects managed by carers centres, Crossroad Care schemes and young carers services across England, Scotland and Wales.
Area of Care: 
Mental HealthPhysical illness
Outcomes: 
Wellbeing
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, February 24, 2015 - 14:00
Body: 

An Evaluation of the Improving Health Outcomes Programme 

As part of its Healthy Places, Healthy People funding programme, carers centres and schemes in locations pre-determined by People’s Health Trust were invited to submit project proposals detailing how they would spend funding to develop effective services to improve health outcomes for either older carers (those aged 60 plus) or young adult carers (aged 16–24) from socio-economically disadvantaged communities.

Graphic from report

Programme aim

The overarching aim of the programme was to improve the physical health and emotional wellbeing of carers across England, Scotland and Wales.

For older carer projects, Network Partners’ aims were divided into two categories, with Network Partners opting for either category:

  • Increase the opportunities for older carers to access activities aimed at improving health outcomes.
  • Increase the ability of older carers to access breaks from their caring role and improve the emotional, physical and/or financial health of older carers.

For all young adult carers projects, the specific aims were:

  • Improve the life chances of young adult carers.
  • Increase access to and/or develop support structures to enable young adult carers to move from appropriate children’s services to adult services.
  • Increase the support available for young adult carers to make informed choices about their own physical and mental health.

31 Network Partners were awarded funding in 30 geographical areas. 23 Network Partners planned to work on developing services for older carers, and eight Network Partners aimed to work with young adult carers. The grant available for each area was £40,000 for 12 months during 2012–13.

Evaluation

The evaluation of the programme concentrated on the project design and the impacts created for the beneficiaries supported by the projects. It also looked at the wider impact of the grant funding on the Network Partners, in particular exploring how grant funding can be used to address five wider issues that Network Partners are facing:

  • strategic
  • demand
  • asset
  • preventative and
  • carer-led challenges.

Download the PDF iconimproving health outcomes - impact report.

Improving the Health of Carers: A Casebook of Projects front coverImproving the Health of Carers:
A Casebook of Projects

This report takes an in-depth look at nine projects funded through the Improving Health Outcomes programme.

The report highlights the practical lessons from these projects about how to set up and deliver local support, and what to consider in the separate stages of work.

Download the PDF iconimproving health outcomes - casebook.

Older Carers Voices and Stories: The Personal Impact of Funding

This report aims to bring together older carers’ thoughts and feelings about dedicated services and activities delivered by Carers Trust Network Partners under the Improving Health Outcomes programme and the positive impact it has had on their lives.

Older Carers Voices and Stories: The Personal Impact of Funding front cover

Opinions have been gathered from 39 older carers who attended six focus groups held with Network Partners at Redbridge Carers Support Service, Derbyshire Carers Association, Helensburgh and Lomond Carers, Hillingdon Carers, North Argyll Carers Centre and Carer Support Wiltshire.

Older carer’s personal views about targeted services and activities, which would not have existed without the financial support of People’s Health Trust, are combined with five real life case studies. These provide a taste of the challenges older carers have to face on a daily basis and how just a little funding and support can have a significant and often life changing impact on carers’ health and wellbeing.

Download PDF iconimproving health outcomes - older carers voices and stories.

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PDF icon Improving Health Outcomes - Impact ReportPDF icon Improving Health Outcomes - Impact Report (Summary)
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What you can do to support young adult carers at college

Here are some examples of what you can do to support young adult carers at college.
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carersCarers in employment
I work in: 
Carers servicesSocial careEducationCommissioning
I work with: 
Young adult carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, November 25, 2014 - 15:15
Body: 

Identify young adult carers in your institution

By identifying the numbers of young adult carers in your institution you will be able to commission services to meet their needs. Carers Trust recommends adding a field to college application forms to identify as early whether the student has a caring role. By taking this step you will be able to proactively engage and support young adult carers from the moment they start at the institution.

Raise awareness of carers and caring among students

Some young adult carers may not realise that they are in a caring role as caring is something that they have always done. It is important to raise awareness of caring amongst students and offer support if they come forward to disclose their caring status.

Carers Trust recommends that you publicise who young adult carers are and the services available to support them as much as possible in the school. Even a poster can make a difference to a young adult carers life.

Raise awareness of carers among staff

Ensure that all staff members are aware of what a young adult carer is, the challenges they may face and available solutions. Research has shown that 75% of respondents informed college or university staff of their caring role but almost half 45% said no one recognised them as a carer and helped them.

Some of the signs that someone may be a young adult carer include:

  • being late for classes
  • handing in homework/ coursework late or incomplete
  • difficulty concentrating
  • high levels of absence
  • drops in grades
  • Low confidence.

If you suspect that a student may be a carer, take some time to talk to them and offer support to work through their issues so they can achieve the best grades possible whilst at college.

Engage with the local carers services

Most areas will have a local carers service nearby where students can access support. You can find them by looking at the carers services map or via your local authorities’ web page or advice line.

Carers services will be able to advise you on the appropriate steps to take if a student discloses that they are a carer.

Carers Services may be interested in working with colleges to raise awareness so see if anyone would be available at your local service. Give them a call to see what they can offer you.

What is already being done to support young adult carers at college

There is growing recognition that young adult carers need better support at college. Two significant pieces of research of carers at university are PDF iconYoung adult carers experiences at college and university published by Carers Trust and PDF iconLearning with Care published by the National Union of Students (NUS). These show examples of good practice and have recommendations on how colleges can better support young adult carers.

Carers Trust is currently working with a group of colleges to produce a toolkit so universities can better support young adult carers. The toolkit will be available in early 2015. Keep checking the website for more details.

Carers Trust in partnership with NUS and The University of Nottingham held an event over two days in June 2014. 200 young adult carers, support workers and decision makers came together to discuss how young adult carers could be better supported to access college.

Downloads: 
PDF icon Young adult carers at college and universityPDF icon Learning with Care NUS research report
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Young adult carers and college

College is an important step for young people to access both the workplace and higher education.
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carersCarers in employment
I work in: 
Carers servicesSocial careEducationCommissioning
I work with: 
Young adult carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, November 25, 2014 - 15:15
Body: 

Why should colleges support young adult carers?

College is an important step for young people to access both the workplace and higher education. Historically, young adult carers have struggled to access college due to their grades in school and their caring role – young adult carers aged 16-18 are twice as likely to be not in education, employment, or training (NEET) than their peers.

There are carers in every institution although many are likely to be hidden. Recent research revealed that of the young adult carers who informed their college, 45% felt there was no one to help them (Sempik, Becker 2013). This discourages young adult carers from coming forward as they see ‘no point’ in telling anyone.

Mental ill-health

The pressure that academic study, paid work and caring puts on young adult carers is reflected in the high rates of mental ill health reported to Carers Trust. 45% of those surveyed reported a mental health problem – almost twice the national average.

The result of this is that, without the right support, young adult carers can struggle to do as well as their peers at college. A recent survey by the National Union of Students showed that only 36% of student carers felt able to balance their commitments, compared with 53% of students without caring responsibilities. This can have a negative impact on their life opportunities and the forming of their own identity and independence.

Young adult carers experiences of college

Harriet was caring for her dad (she now cares for mum) when she was 16/17 and at college. She was a lone carer – her mum and dad split up when she was 13 and her dad developed a drink problem.

At school Harriet had a sympathetic teacher who knew about her home life and gave her the right support. She got very good results at GSCE with 15 A and A* grades.

She went onto Sixth Form College and because of her academic excellence, they wanted her to take seven AS levels and didn’t want her to drop any. As Harriet says, “this would have been difficult for anyone, let alone someone running a house and caring for a parent.”

Struggling

As a result of the pressure Harriet struggled. She asked for more support from the college which was given and then withdrawn when she had to miss sessions because of her caring responsibilities. She also had some counselling sessions but she didn’t find them practically helpful.

Due to the lack of support at college and the situation at home, Harriet was diagnosed with depression and failed all of her exams.

Harriet decided to leave the college and discovered there was no record of her being a carer or being diagnosed with depression on her records, despite her saying so many times.

Harriet has now left education and is being supported to secure an apprenticeship by her local carers service.

Downloads: 
PDF icon Learning with Care NUS research reportPDF icon Young adult carers at college and university
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