Any of us could become a carer at any time. A family member having a fall, or a stroke, developing Alzheimer's or Parkinson's, suddenly becomes a dependent. A car accident leaves a young person paralysed; a difficult birth gives a new parent a lifelong commitment to a disabled child. Such events mean, without warning, the life of someone else changes forever as they become a carer. Carers put their lives on hold, perhaps unable to carry on working or enjoying social activities because of their caring role. Family income is often greatly reduced and getting respite can be difficult. Holidays, an evening out or even Christmas shopping become insurmountable problems.
And in a rural county such as Shropshire, the challenge of being a carer can be even greater, leaving carers unable to access support services, feeling isolated and leading to depression or other illnesses. There are an estimated 34,000 family carers living in Shropshire today, we want to make sure they have the help they need when they need it.
Sarah, a local carer told us, "At 28 years old and a mother with two young children, my life changed overnight when my mother in law passed away… I had to give up full time work and look after my 17 year old brother in law who is profoundly disabled. Every hour of our family's life became about looking after him and many times, I felt like giving up. When I found out the Carers Support Service it was a huge relief - just having someone to listen to me who understood how it feels was a lifeline."
Fundraising helps us to raise vital funds for the services we offer, and to expand the opportunities for respite breaks, training, events and activities for carers across the County.
We want you to feel right at home with volunteering to help raise funds for local carers. There are many types of volunteering opportunities, from giving your time and energy to a fundraising group, helping at one of our events, to offering an hour or two to collect at a supermarket. Whatever you can offer will help enormously.