Being a carer

Looking after a vulnerable adult

When you're caring for an adult who is frail or vulnerable, perhaps because they are old or have health problems, there are likely to be times when you could do with some kind of support to take the pressure off yourself. Maybe you would like someone to take on some of the care for a while, or want some time to yourself. Or maybe you would just like someone to talk to about your experiences as a carer.

Your support options
If you want to plan support for the person you look after then our following pages may be of particular interest to you:

And if you are looking after someone with dementia, a mental health problem or a learning disability then the following pages will also be useful:

Support from your local council
Your local social services may also be able to help. In order to work out if you are eligible for support as a carer, and to see how much help you need to make life easier for you, they will need to carry out a carer's assessment with you.

After the assessment they will identify and agree your needs with you and discuss the help and support available to meet them.

When completing the carer's assessment they may also offer to assess the needs of the person you look after.

The amount you pay for support will depend on what services you receive and your financial circumstances. This will be explained to you as part of the carer's assessment process.

This leaflet will tell you what kind of carer support is available to you and how to request a carer's assessment.

Paying for private care
You may find that you will not be eligible for financial help to arrange support at home from your local council. Or you may simply prefer to make your own arrangements - this will give you greater flexibility and choice over your support.

If you want to arrange support privately look at Care Place to find about agencies providing the support you want in your area.

The Care Quality Commission will also allow you to search for care agencies in your area which provide the kind of care which you want, and to check recent inspection reports which will tell you whether the care provided by each agency is considered to be up to the required standard.

Coordinating your care arrangements
If you have a smart phone or a tablet then you can download the Jointly app; this makes caring for someone a little easier, less stressful and a lot more organised by making communication and coordination between those who share the care as easy as a text message.

Other information and advice

Sutton Carers Centre provides information, advice and support services for adult carers, parent carers, family carers, young carers and carers of people with mental health conditions. Find out more about the support the Carers Centre can offer you by getting in touch: 020 8296 5611, enquiries@suttoncarerscentre.org.

Alzheimer’s Society Sutton provides information, advice and support for carers and people with dementia. Find out more about the support Alzheimer’s Society Sutton can offer you by getting in touch: 020 8770 1875
sutton@alzheimers.org.uk.

The Carers Forum meets quarterly at Sutton Civic Offices, and is an opportunity for carers to discuss the latest developments in carer support services in Sutton, and meet other unpaid carers from across the borough. Contact Sutton Carers Centre for information on future forum dates, and to book your place at the forum: 020 8296 5611, enquiries@suttoncarerscentre.org.

Community Drug Service for South London (CDSSL) provides support for family members and carers of substance misusers. Find out more about the support CDSSL can offer you by getting in touch: 020 8773 1881, info@cdssl.org.

Age UK Sutton provides information, advice and support to older people and their carers. Find out more about the support Age UK can offer you by getting in touch: 020 8770 4090, contact details/form.

Sutton Centre for Independent Living (SCILL) provides information and advice for carers and the people they care for. Find out more about the support SCILL can offer you by getting in touch: 020 8770 4065, information@scill.org.uk.

Sutton Citizens Advice Bureaux provides information and advice around finances (including benefits, debt and other financial matters). Find out more about the support the Sutton CABx can offer you by getting in touch: 020 8405 3552, contact form.

Sutton Mental Health Foundation provides information, advice and support for people with mental health conditions and their carers. Find out more about the support SCILL can offer you by getting in touch using the details below: Tel: 020 8770 0172, admin@smhf.org.uk.

There is also a regular programme of support groups and meetings for carers in Sutton – take a look at our page on local support groups for carers to find out more.

Independent Age provides a guide called Carers: what support is available.

Carers UK is a charity set up to help the millions of people who look after an older, disabled or seriously ill family member or friend.

Carers Trust offers information on what the role of a carer can mean.

Looking after someone with dementia
The following provide independent information and advice on caring for someone with dementia.

Looking after someone with mental health problems
Rethink Mental Illness provides specialist advice for the carers of people with mental health problems.

Mind, a national mental health charity, also provides specialist advice for carers.

NetDoctor offers advice to the carers of people with depression.

Carers Trust offers some key facts for mental health carers.