‘The world’s going on around me and I’m not able to tap into it.’ Report calls for action on carer loneliness in Croydon this Carers Week
Almost half of Croydon carers feel frequently lonely, according to a new report by the Carers Information Service.
The report found that 45% of Croydon residents looking after a friend or family member due to illness, disability or old age felt lonely all or most of the time.
A further 64% said that caring usually prevented socialising, with the worries and responsibilities of caring leaving little time to spend with loved ones.
Such high levels of loneliness puts health at risk, as research suggests that lacking social contact can be as bad for you as smoking 15 cigarettes a day.
One Croydon resident who cares full-time for her son with a learning disability and multiple health conditions commented: ‘I can’t remember the last time I went out with my husband… I feel quite sad about it sometimes. The world’s going on around me and I’m not able to tap into it.’
The Carers Information Service is calling for greater action on carer loneliness across all sections of the community, asking people to reach out to carers they know and offer them support and understanding.
Carers said that more breaks from caring, better support for the person they cared for and greater awareness from professionals and the public would help them feel less alone.
Organisations and individuals can sign up to a #CarerConversations pledge, promising to do their bit to help the borough’s carers.
The report coincides with the Carers Week ‘Healthy and Connected’ campaign, the national campaign to raise awareness of the 6.5 million people caring for a friend or family member due to illness, disability or old age across the UK. Around 33,000 people care for someone in Croydon.
Helen Thompson, Carers Information Service Manager, said:
‘Caring is a tough job and it is heart breaking to think that so many people are still struggling alone.
Carers Week is a fantastic opportunity to reach out to the hidden carers in our community, and we can all play our part to make sure no one falls through the net.
We want to encourage people to talk to carers around them and let them know that they aren’t on their own, and that help is out there if they need it.’
For further information, please contact:
Amy Deakin, Communications and Publications Officer, Carers’ Information Service on 020 8649 6288 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Helen Thompson, Manager, Carers’ Information Service on 020 8649 6284 or email email@example.com.