National Carers Week: The Care Workers Charity
Published on 13th June 2018
This week, 11th-17th June, marks National Carers Week, as such we want to shine a light on the 1.5 million people working in the social care sector in the UK. Working on the ‘front-line’ is far from easy; the hours are long, the pay is low and emotions run high. Yet the role is so crucial, it takes a very special person to take on the care needs of someone else.
Many people become Carers because they have cared for a loved one and want to continue helping others who are physically less able than themselves. In their eyes, the ultimate reward of being a Carer is the relationship you gain with the people you care for rather than the pay packet.
This being said, money makes the world go round and the average care worker in the UK earns £7.76 hour. The Care Workers Charity was founded to support current, former and retired care workers in times of hardship. They are a charitable organisation, continually looking to raise funds so they can provide hardship grants to care workers in times of need.
Pete and his wife have worked in the care sector for over 10 years as support workers and have been part of organisations including Community Integrated Care and Four Seasons Care Group. With numerous health issues and mounting debts, the family approached The Care Workers Charity to help with the cost of new beds and bedding for their children and new-born baby.
My partner and I have been full time employees within the care sector for over 10 years, but numerous health conditions had pushed us into severe financial hardship during a time we were meant to be looking after our children. I knew that remaining silent and wallowing in a difficult situation could be a time bomb for family separation and long term poverty, so I was relieved when The Care Worker's Charity (CWC) website popped up on my staff computer while on an afternoon shift at work.
Listening to my circumstances
I clicked on the website, viewed the contents and sent an enquiry message about my family's circumstance and our need for some support. Consulting Citizens Advice and reliable charities like the CWC for an assessment of your circumstances is an important first step at least for the sake of your family. CWC checked my eligibility for a grant and listened to the description of my situation and things have never been the same since the successful outcome of my application.
Keeping a promise
Receiving support from CWC was never a right but a privileged support. They were patient with me and the responses to my requests were helpful. Things have positively changed, especially for my children. To them, it was like a promise was made and fulfilled. It was good to learn that an organisation is grateful for the work my wife and I do and exists specifically to help frontline care workers overcome financial difficulties. Things have never been the same since the arrival of the children’s bunk beds and accessories. Our baby now thinks her little bed is her 'own bedroom' and she can sleep longer at night, while our older children now see bedtime as 'happy time'.
What can you do
If you’re a care worker in crisis then you can apply for a hardship grant here.
It’s also easy for you to get involved in raising money for The Care Workers Charity. TrustedCare CEO, Mark Walford is doing just that and is training hard ready to complete a 75-mile charity bike ride on the 28th June. He will be cycling from Bagshot to the New Forest in order to raise funds - if you would like to donate, you can do so by visiting Marks JustGiving page.