The programme has been funded thanks to the support of players of the People’s Postcode Lottery.
The programme, Peer Support +, has supported 398 carers over 21 projects in Wales, Scotland and England. Funding for each project enabled a wide range of peer support and group activities designed to address loneliness. These included walks, craft workshops, trips, practical and emotional support classes as well as social sessions. These recreational activities were mixed in with more practical and educational sessions on planning for the future, wills and Power of Attorney, getting to grips with technology and managing low moods.
Evidence-based evaluations of each project show that these peer support activities have resulted in a 15% reduction in feelings of isolation and loneliness among a sample of carers who took part.
Engagement in the project also resulted in significant increases among carers with:
- Carrying out their caring role (81%)
- Improved relationship with the person they were caring for (71%)
- Happiness (77%)
- Ability to form new friendships (81%)
- Knowing more about available services (86%)
Carers Trust was delighted that two of its Network Partners, Carers Resource Scarborough and Ryedale and Kingston Carers Network, were able to come to The King’s Fund in London to share results from the project that they ran with attendees .
The results were very positively received by senior delegates from across the voluntary and statutory sectors, including British Red Cross, Public Health England, Campaign to End Loneliness, The King’s Fund, Centre for Mental Health, Independent Age and the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), FaithAction and Oxfam..