You can get help and support if you’re responsible for looking after someone who has a disability, is getting older or has become ill.
Help with money
You may be able to get help to increase your income if your caring duties are affecting your finances. Depending on your income, assets and living arrangements, you might be able apply for support. The Citizens Advice website has information on:
- Applying for Carers Allowance – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/carers-allowance
- Other benefits that may be available to you – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits
- Getting help with paying for prescriptions and other healthcare costs from the NHS low income scheme – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/health/get-advice-about-health-services/#helpwithhealthcostsifyouareonalowincome
- Cutting down your household costs, including gas and electricity bills – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/consumer/energy/energy-supply/get-help-paying-your-bills/grants-and-benefits-to-help-you-pay-your-energy-bills – and council tax discounts – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/housing/council-tax/check-if-you-can-pay-less-council-tax
- Having your contributions towards your state pension covered by the government if you’ve given up or cut down paid work to care for someone. Carers UK has advice to help you protect your pension – www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice/financial-support/carers-allowance/carer-s-allowance-your-state-pension-plus-other-benefits
- Getting a grant or other financial help from a local charity or trust. For example, Turn2Us has details of charities that might be able to help you – grants-search.turn2us.org.uk
Help for the person you’re caring for
Making sure the person you’re caring for gets all the social care and support they’re entitled to could mean your role as a carer is made easier. They’re entitled to get a care needs assessment from the council. The Citizens Advice website has information on benefits and support on:
- Claiming benefits – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/benefits/sick-or-disabled-people-and-carers/benefits-for-people-who-are-sick-or-disabled
- Making arrangements for you to look after their affairs, for example through power of attorney – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/family/looking-after-people/managing-affairs-for-someone-else
- CCmplaining about the social care and support services they’ve received – www.citizensadvice.org.uk/health/get-advice-about-health-services
Dorset Carers Card Scheme
If you are registered as a carer with us then you will be eligible for the Carers Card Scheme. If you haven’t yet registered as a carer then contact Carer Support Dorset today to do so by calling 0800 368 8349 or emailing email@example.com
The scheme offers a range of discounts on goods and services including:
- Days out and activities
- Travel and holidays
- Health and beauty
- Sport and fitness
- Places to eat and drink
- Trades and services
Find out more about the carers card here – https://www.carersupportdorset.co.uk/information-hub/carers-card
Grants for carers
There are some charities and trusts that give financial help in the form of a grant to people in need. Grants can be given as money, products or services and don’t have to be paid back. To qualify for a grant, you would need to meet the eligibility criteria for the specific organisation. Turn2Us has details of charities that might be able to help you. For more information and to use their grant search tool, visit grants-search.turn2us.org.uk or contact them on 0808 802 2000.
The Leonardo Trust – www.leonardotrust.org/what-we-fund – may be able to help with funding for things you might need. Contact us to find out more by calling 0800 368 8349 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org .
If you need further help or advice, there are a number of organisations you can contact.
- Carers UK for further information about financial support available – www.carersuk.org/help-and-advice/financial-support
- The Carers Trust to find out about grants available for you or the person you care for – https://carers.org
- Age UK financial support for carers – www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/care/helping-a-loved-one/financial-support
You can also call us at Carer Support Dorset for any advice, information and support around finances and more. Call us free on 0800 368 8349.