Carers caring for Carers – Staying Well Together

VAL received funding from People’s Health Trust with money raised through Health Lottery East Midlands to support the promotion of the Active Communities programme to reach locally-led organisations, and help them to submit quality applications to the Trust.

As part of this work, VAL gave feedback to the funder about the issues local VCSE organisations had experienced with the stage one-application form.  They are going to take this information into account to make the application more user friendly.

VAL continued to support applicants that reached the stage two process with advice on what to include in various sections of the form and a read and review of the application.  Funding will enable a number of local VCSE organisations, to deliver local initiatives that local people will create and shape which will help their community or neighbourhood to become even better.

People’s Health Trust’s Grants Support Officer Martine Fitt says, “It’s important to the Trust to work with local organisations and use their knowledge and expertise to support groups to apply for an Active Communities grant, and ensure we are reaching people in neighbourhoods experiencing disadvantage.

One of the VCSE organisations that VAL supported with the stage two application was Carers of Leicestershire Advocacy and Support Project.

Support included what to include in various aspects of the application form, demonstrating that the project idea aligned with the criteria and ethos of the Active Community programme.

Kirsteen McVeigh, GP Partnership Worker at The Carers Centre says “Thanks very much for your support with our People’s Health Trust bid, your notes and suggestions were much appreciated. “

Carers caring for Carers – Staying Well Together

The project will offer 6 x 10 week programmes of weekly activity sessions that will support carers to look after and focus on their own health and wellbeing. A Carers Steering Group will directly lead the project. They will decide when and where the activity sessions will take place, as well as what type of activity the different programmes will focus on. Pre project consultation identified a wide range of activities that carers felt would support them to improve their health and wellbeing and included everything from gardening to crafts to yoga and mindfulness

Kirsteen McVeigh, GP Partnership Worker says: “Carers tell us how difficult they can find it to look after their own health and wellbeing when they’re looking after a family member or friend. Stress, lack of sleep, back pain, depression, diabetes; all of these issues and many more result in carers being twice as likely to suffer poor health as well as having 40% raised mortality.

Nobody knows more about the impact of caring on health than carers themselves and that is why we really appreciate this funding from Peoples Health Trust, which will allow carers to decide for themselves what they need. This project is a great opportunity for people to take some time out for themselves and focus on their own health and wellbeing – something which can often seem impossible during the caring day but with a little extra support, can make all the difference.”

To find out how you as a funder, or business interested in setting up a grant scheme as part of your corporate social responsibility initiatives could value from taking to VAL contact them on their sector support helpline 0116 257 5050  helpline@valonline.org.uk.

If you are a VCSE organisation and are looking at how to fund your service delivery/projects please contact VAL at 0116 2575 5050 helpline@valonline.org.uk. VAL can provide various support including guidance on funding criteria, read and review of draft applications, and funding searches.

About Voluntary Action Leicestershire (VAL)

Voluntary Action LeicesterShire is a charity that focuses on improving the lives of people in Leicester & Leicestershire. We do this through direct service delivery and by providing support to the local voluntary and community sector. Find out more at www.valonline.org.uk

About Carers of Leicestershire Advocacy and Support Project

Based in Leicester City Centre overlooking the Train Station, the charitable company is known as The Carers Centre, they support family carers across the diverse population of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland who look after people with different needs.

The project Carers caring for Carers – Staying Well Together funded by People’s Health Trust using money raised by Health Lottery East Midlands,is open to all unpaid carers who live in Leicester City or Oadby & Wigston. The project starts in the autumn.

If you are interested in finding out more or would like to be involved in setting up and directing the project through the work of the Carers Steering Group please get in touch with Kirsteen McVeigh at The Carers Centre on 0116 251 0999 or email:  enquiries@thecarerscentre.org.uk

About People’s Health Trust

People’s Health Trust is an independent charity investing in local neighbourhoods to help create a society without health inequalities. It works closely with each of the regional and country lotteries raising money through The Health Lottery, and distributes grants.