New to caring?
If you are looking after someone else, or helping to look after them, and they couldn’t manage without your support, then you are a carer.
The person you help could be a relative, partner or friend; and they might be ill, frail, disabled or have mental health or substance misuse problems.
People sometimes only realise they are ‘a carer’ after many years. In other situations, people can become carers overnight.
What you need to know
There are some key things to know if you are new to caring – or just realised you’re a carer.
There is a lot of help available – and we’re here to support you in every way we can.
- Acknowledge you ARE a carer – it’s a first step that opens up doors to help.
- Tell your GP you’re a carer – Your role will be recorded on your notes, you’ll get flexible appointments/text reminders and other help, like free flu jabs.
- Register with us. We can provide a whole range of support, see here. Importantly we can tell you what help you’re entitled to, depending on your circumstances (such as benefits, or the right to a Carers Assessment). There’s more explanation of the full range of support available to carers from Surrey County Council on their website.
- Think about coming along to one of our events, workshops and support groups – these activities can really help you
- Look after yourself – it’s so important to take care of you. Yes, it’s hard to find time, but try to look after your health, your emotions, your social life and hobbies. The better you feel, the better you can take care of your loved one. If you’re physically supporting your loved one, like helping them get out bed, you can get help from our our moving and handling team to make sure you’re doing this safely.
For younger carers
Don’t forget we have specialist help and support for younger carers.
If you’re under 18, find out more about our Surrey Young Carers service.
If you’re a young adult, aged 18-24, find out about our help for you.