Findings from a Carers Trust survey of 3,430 unpaid carers from across the UK show 45% don’t get enough support, while 41% have seen their caring hours rocket in the past year.
For the first time, the annual research also highlights how women, those from poorer backgrounds, carers from Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities, LGB+ carers and older unpaid carers experience additional barriers to support.
“The great majority of those who care don’t do so because they don’t want to entrust the care of their loved ones to health or social care services. They do so because support, in practical and financial terms, doesn’t exist. They see no alternative, and a lack of action by the UK Government ensures this crisis continues.” - Unpaid carer Karen.
Each year Carers Trust runs a survey of thousands of unpaid carers across Britain. The surveys are designed to identify the challenges faced by carers, assess the level of support they receive and develop recommendations for policymakers based on the survey findings.
This year we have worked from the start to put unpaid carers at the heart of the survey and our research. To do this, we set up a panel of ‘lived experience advisers’ – unpaid carers who supported us across the lifetime of the project.
Their insights helped shape the survey questions and were invaluable in analysing the emerging findings from the survey. They also helped Carers Trust develop key recommendations for policymakers based on the survey findings.
Watch this video where two unpaid carers from the panel, Lavinia and Victor, describe their role in putting the survey together, as well as their reaction to some of the results.
“I wish we had someone who could support me through this journey and help me understand what’s out there – I just want to feel guided on how to be the best carer I can be, but you are left from day one to get on with it. No wonder unpaid carers feel so alone at times.”
“Carer’s Allowance is pitiful. I’ve had to give up my full-time job so my mum doesn’t go into a care home which would cost the Government thousands. Yet all I get is £76 a week?”