The Advocare Caring for Carers service

If you are or have recently been caring for someone, you are important to us: Advocare could be important for you. For those experiencing difficulty with the demands of their caregiving role our independent Caring for Carers service offers help and information, support and advocacy. Our service is based in Poole, Dorset, and is free to unpaid family carers including those no longer caring full-time.

Our Advocare - Caring for Carers service is based on the premise that:

  • Carers are first of all people who need to feel valued for who are and what they do.
  • Carers who feel dispirited are more likely to be in fear of a crisis hastening their loved one's admission into residential care.
  • By caring appropriately for their carers we can help to prevent the premature or unwanted institutionalisation of vulnerable people.

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure"
(Benjamin Franklin 1706-1790)

Carers generally come to us when they are at their wits' end having tried everyone else. Having been unpaid family caregivers ourselves we can understand some of the difficulties other carers experience. Our aim is to reduce their stress and anxiety through individual or group support. We listen and understand the unpaid carer's unique perspective.

Don't suffer in silence!

If you would like to talk in confidence to someone who has also been a carer please call our Caring for Carers line on (01202) 737592.

Help and information relevant to the individual's unique situation

Some of the issues that have prompted people to contact us include:

  • Dealing with a shock diagnosis;
  • Requesting a Carers Assessment;
  • Being included on the Carers Register;
  • Obtaining respite breaks;
  • Arranging Lasting Power of Attorney;
  • Obtaining reliable, appropriate home care;
  • Accessing free NHS-funded continuing care including when caring for someone at home;
  • How to deal with institutional abuse or neglect of a vulnerable loved one;
  • The official complaints process.

Support

If you are feeling alone or you are struggling with some of the above issues we're here for you. Just call our Caring for Carers line: (01202) 737592. We can generally help people to see that they do have options. We can also assist them in dealing with some of the difficulties of their caregiving role. We offer support in a group setting or on an individual basis as follows:

After-Care:

There is life after caring. Advocare helps former carers deal with some of the 'invisible' aspects of caring such as feeling 'stuck' when they are no longer caring full-time. We also support bereaved carers.

The Assert Programme:

Assert is a six-month carer-centred programme for current and former unpaid carers. By putting people back in touch with who they are Assert reduces stress and brings a long-lasting positive change in outlook. For example:

  • Ruby no longer feels trapped in her caregiving role;
  • Alfred no longer feels isolated as a carer;
  • Maud has been able to deal with aspects of her life that had been depressing her;
  • Tom no longer feels 'stuck' after his wife died and has 'moved on'.

Advocare's Assert programme is facilitated in a small group setting or on an individual basis according on demand. For more details please call Cathey on (01202) 737592.

For those who would like counselling:

We can refer Dorset carers and former carers for free counselling. They would see an experienced counsellor who understands carers' issues, including the need for support with impending bereavement. For more details please call Cathey on (01202) 737592.

Advocacy

Carers know they can trust us and can speak openly to us about their needs and concerns. Sometimes we can open fresh channels of communication with statutory bodies which improves understanding on both sides. Even with our support, however, some carers 'pull back' from dealing with unwelcome official decisions about their loved-ones' care for fear of backlash. We can then make representations on the carer's behalf to the appropriate authorities whilst safeguarding their interests and those of their loved one.

Membership of Advocare

As a member of Advocare you are able to access any of the above. Membership is free and open to anyone over eighteen who is or has been a family caregiver. We do ask people to buy an Advocare badge which costs GBP 2.00 each to help with admin costs. Our Advocare trolley tokens also cost GBP 2.00 each.

For more information please call our Caring for Carers line on (01202) 737592 or send an E-mail to: .

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