Someone being dependent on you for their care needs can be emotionally and physically stressful. To be able to supply the best care you should also have a carer support network in place to care for your needs.
This can extend beyond family and friends as there are lots of organisations and charities in Suffolk who will provide you with the support you need to get on with the looking after.
In addition to the support services listed below, check out Age Space’s advice and information on Respite Care in Suffolk.
A Carer’s Assessment
As a carer you are eligible to take a Carer Needs Assessment that, much like the Care Needs Assessment, can offer advice and point you towards local support groups to help you to look after yourself. It can be the first step in finding the support. Unlike the Care Needs Assessment, there is no online portal through which to apply. You apply for one by contacting Customer First on the Suffolk County Council Website – they ask that you do so through their built in “Webchat” before turning to phone or email.
Find Carer Support Groups in Suffolk
Enjoy a coffee with a range of people going through the same experiences. Support groups can help you to destress, focus on yourself, and share advice.
Suffolk County Council
Suffolk County Council has a section on their website dedicated to the support that Carers can receive. The first bit of advice they offer is to tell your GP that you are a carer so that this can be registered on your medical record.
This can come with a variety of benefits including free flu vaccinations, greater flexibility of appointment times, and directing you to local help and support.
Music in Our Bones
Operating across Suffolk (Ipswich, Gt Blakenham, Felixstowe, Bury, Stowmarket, Oulton Broad, Lowestoft) Music In Our Bones is a charity offering several different groups for different people.
Their mission is to provide a space in which to escape from the stress and emotional burden that comes with giving care through singing. No musical experience is needed, it’s just a place to have fun and escape! Have a look through their groups on their website.
We also sat down with Music in Our Bones founder Tracy Sharp and talked all things singing, community and carer support.
Suffolk Family Carers
Suffolk Family Carers often work in harmony with the council to provide services, advice, and support groups to all types of carers including those looking after elderly people.
Telephone: 01473 835477
Suffolk Family Carers are also affiliated to many support groups that meet at least once a month across Suffolk. In these groups, carers can socialise with others also looking after people and partake in activities to get a short respite from full time caring. Look below for your closest group and click for the meeting times, locations, and contact details.
Suffolk Carers Matter
The aim of Suffolk Carers Matter is to improve the lives of every unpaid, family carer in the county. They offer support carers with their mental and emotional health, as well as ensuring they are able to access the other support and advice services available to them locally.
You can contact Suffolk Carers Matter by using their advice line or by going on their website and using the live chat bubble (“ask”). Both are open seven days a week and staffed by trained and knowledgeable Carer Advisors.
Call their Advice Line – 01284 333 035
Visit the Suffolk Carers Matter website