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Carers Information

Being a carer can be both highly rewarding, but challenging role.

It may be that you’re supporting the health and wellbeing of a family member or friend, who is living with a challenging condition, disability, or needs help adjusting to life at home after an illness.

We want to make sure you feel supported, valued, and informed so that you can take care of yourself, and your loved ones.

There’s a range of emotional and practical support available to you if you need help, from local communities as well as national organisations.

Visit the NHS website to find out more (opens new browser tab)

Looking after yourself is just as important as looking after loved ones.

Taking time out, even if it’s only ten minutes, to go for a walk, chat with friends, or playing sports and games can help relieve stress and make you feel more active.

Tips for staying well

  1. Tell your friends, family and GP that you’re a carer – talking to others who have gone through similar experiences can help, and make everyone aware of your commitments
  2. Find out more about your health condition(s) and those of the person you care for, their treatment and medication.

Visit the NHS website to find out more about conditions and treatments (opens new browser tab)

  1. Find out what practical, financial and emotional support is available 
  1. Speak to your local carers service to make a plan in case of emergency 
  1. Prioritise getting a good night’s sleep.

Visit Mind website for support if you have sleep problems (opens new browser tab)

  1. Talk to your employer about what you’re going through. Understanding your rights as an employee can help you decide how much support you need, and how much flexibility you have at work. 

If you need to talk to someone

There are local and national communities you can contact if you’re feeling overwhelmed or anxious

Read our Charities and Communities leaflet (pdf)

Visit the MIND website for tips for staying well (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Family Lives website for support and advice (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Rethink Mental Illness website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Samaritans website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Young Minds (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Optalis (opens new browser tab)

Talking Therapies

If you’re struggling with the emotional impact of your caring role, Talking Therapies Berkshire can help you find ways to cope. Our service is open to adults of all ages, and referrals for people aged over 65 are especially welcomed.

Find out how to access mental health support (opens new browser tab)

You can also find resources and guides on our website to help you if you need more advice.  

Resources to help with your mental health wellbeing (opens new browser tab)

Alternatively, you can call NHS 111 for free.

Call 111 (free)

Visit the NHS111 website (opens new browser tab)

The Care Act 2014 gives a bigger say to people who receive care and support or look after someone as a carer.

As a carer, you could be entitled to support from your local council or authority. You can contact them to  request a Carers Assessment.

Read our FAQ leaflet (pdf) 

You can also visit gov.uk and NHS websites to find more information about the Care Act, and the types of benefits and support you may be entitled to.

Visit the gov.uk website to find out more about the Care Act (opens new browser tab)

Visit the gov.uk to check whether you’re entitled to carers and disability benefits (opens new browser tab)

Visit the NHS website to read more about Benefits for carers(opens new browser tab)

Visit the NHS website to find out more about Carers Assessments(opens new browser tab)

Under the Care Act 2014, local authorities (Social Services) are responsible for supporting carers including providing carers with a carers assessment. 

Read our council contact leaflet (pdf)

Visit the website of your local authority to find out more.

Visit the Bracknell Forest Council website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Reading Borough Council website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the West Berkshire Council website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Wokingham Borough Council website (opens new browser tab)

Mental Health conditions and treatment

If you or the person you’re caring for need urgent help, contact your GP or call NHS 111.

You can use the NHS website to find out more about a condition, including advice on support and treatment.

Visit the NHS website (opens new browser tab) 

Further help and support

Visit the Mental Health Foundation website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Mind.org.uk website (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Healthtalk.org (opens new browser tab)

Visit the NHS Interactive Tools (opens new browser tab)

Visit the Samaritans website for 24/7 emotional support (opens new browser tab) 

Read our Dementia Handbook (pdf)

If you need or someone you care for needs help, you can find a list of our services and how to get a referral on our website:

View a full list of our adult mental health and wellbeing services

View a full list of our adult physical and community healthcare services 

Help improve our services

As a carer, you’ll have first-hand experience of how our services support our patients.

You may also have suggestions on how we can continue to improve.

We use co-production, to bring together people who use our mental health services, their carers and professionals, to help improve the design and delivery of our services.

You can share your views and experiences by taking part in forums, interview panels, and talking to our teams as part of our learning programmes.

Understanding your perspectives can help us continue to develop good practice. 

We would like to hear your views so please complete our Friends, Family and Carers Feedback form.

Open the Friends, Family, and Carers online feedback form (opens new browser tab) 

Contact our PALS team if you would like to be involved in helping us improve our services.

Visit our PALS service page

Call 0118 960 5027

Email PALS@berkshire.nhs.uk 

The 'Triangle of Care' is a therapeutic alliance between our service user, staff and carers that promotes safety, supports recovery and sustains wellbeing.

We’ve been awarded two stars, meaning that we’ve completed our self-assessment in the inpatient and community services.

Visit the carers.org website to find out about Triangle of Care (opens new browser tab)