New to caring?

New to caring?

Here’s what you need to know if you are new to caring.

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.

  1. Acknowledge you ARE a carer – it’s a first step that opens up doors to help.
  2. 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.
  3. 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).
  4. Think about coming along to one of our events, workshops and support groups – these activities can really help you
  5. 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.

When I first became a carer, the help from ACS was invaluable, particularly the advice on help and benefits available and form filling. I know you will be my first call if and when I need more help.

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.

Surrey Young Carers

If you’re a young adult, aged 18-24, find out about our help for you.

Young Adult Carers

Get in touch

Get in touch with us if you've any questions at all. We'd be delighted to hear from you. Call us on 0303 040 1234 or email CarerSupport@actionforcarers.org.uk. You can also text us (SMS) on 07714 075993.

Get in touch

Lots more to help

We've lots more information to help you.

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Money matters

Caring affects your finances. But there’s help available. Find out more about money matters, including benefits and payments.

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Practical support

There's a lot of practical support and information available. Take a look at our practical help pages.

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Moving and Handling

Learn how to limit the risk of moving and handling with expert advice from our Moving and Handling team.