Carers Support

Are You A Carer?

Do you look after someone who couldn’t get by without your help?

If you look after someone who, because of life limiting illness, disability, addiction, physical or mental ill health who can’t manage on their own, this means that you are a ‘carer’. It also means that you are entitled to help and support. Many people do not see themselves as carers, they simply think of themselves as a friend or family of the person they care for.

As a Practice, we understand that caring for someone is an important and valuable role in the community, which is often a 24-hour job that can be very demanding and isolating and very often overlooked. We further believe carers should receive appropriate support by way of access to accurate information on a range of topics such as entitlement to benefits and respite care and not least, a listening ear when things get too much. Fortunately we have a fantastic service in Northumberland available to carers.

Carers Northumberland is a charity dedicated to improving the lives of carers by responding to the needs of carers, informing carers of their rights and entitlements, supporting carers to access help for the person they care for, reducing the social isolation that so many carers feel and empowering carers to have a voice.

Once the practice know you are a carer we can offer you further assistance such as your free flu vaccination and information on available support. If you would like to be contacted by Carers Northumberland and find out more information about how they can help you as an unpaid carer please complete the attached form and return to the surgery.

About Carers Northumberland

Carers Northumberland provide practical and emotional support and information and encourage carers to have a life of their own outside their caring role.

  • Local carer support groups where carers can socialise and share experiences in a supportive environment
  • Information service offers a telephone helpline, a newsletter, and website specially for carer
  • Trips and days out, therapy and pamper days give carers a break and help them rela
  • Locally based staff who are available by phone or can visit carers at hom
  • Carer support fund provides money to help carers take a break or enjoy a hobb
  • Carers Emergency Card, in partnership with the British Red Cross

Carer Support

For more information please contact:

Carers Northumberland    

Tel: (0844) 800 7354

Telephone Lines are open 10am-2pm Monday to Friday and every 1st and 3rd Tuesday from 5.30pm until 7.30pm.

Young Carers

What is a young carer?

A young carer is someone under 18 who helps look after someone in their family, or a friend, who is ill, disabled, has a mental health condition or misuses drugs or alcohol

A young carer may help in carrying out daily tasks to support someone in areas such as

  • Practical tasks, such as cooking, housework and shopping.
  • Physical care, such as helping someone out of bed.
  • Emotional support, such as talking to someone who is distressed.
  • Personal care, such as helping someone dress.
  • Managing the family budget and collecting prescriptions.
  • Helping to give medicine.
  • Helping someone communicate.
  • Looking after brothers and sisters.For more information on support available for young carers please visit telephone 01670 320025.If you would like to discuss in more detail please contact your GP and ask to speak to the carers champion who will be able to make a referral for ongoing support.

Befriending Service

Several charities offer befriending services, where an older person is assigned a ‘friend’ who will contact them on a regular basis to provide friendly chat and companionship. Befrienders are volunteers. They can call you on the phone at a set time each week, or visit you at home for, say, a cup of tea or to go out for a walk together. You could even become a ‘befriender’ to another older person who wants someone to chat to.

Befriending Charities 

The Silver Line

Esther Rantzen’s charity The Silver Line is a free, confidential 24-hour phone line for older people offering information and friendship. You can call at any time for advice, information or simply a chat. The charity also offers a befriending service. Silver Circles are conference calls for several like-minded people who would like to chat in a group. Silver Letters is for people who like to write and receive hand-written letters, or may be hearing impaired.

Helpline providing information, friendship and advice to older people:

0800 470 8090

24 hours a day, every day of the year

Age UK

New research for Age UK shows that nearly a million (928,000) older people feel lonelier at Christmas time, two-fifths of whom have been widowed. Age UK provides information, advice and support for older people, including local befriending schemes. .

For the Age UK advice line and befriending service, call:

0800 055 6112

Every day, 8am–7pm, including all bank holidays

Independent Age

Independent Age also has a helpline and befriending service. As well as offering regular contact and a strong campaigning voice, the charity provides older people and their families with clear, free and impartial advice on the issues that matter: care and support, money and benefits, health and mobility.

Call the Independent Age helpline or email at for advice or to receive regular phone calls or visits:

0800 319 6789

Mon–Fri, 8am–8pm; Sat, 9am–1pm; closed Sun and public holidays

Spending time outside of the home

Sometimes a simple change of scenery can improve your mood and help to alleviate feelings of loneliness – it can be a simple trip to the shops or a walk in the local park. If you still drive, you could plan a day trip to the coast or the countryside, and you may find other friends would happily join you. If you would like to go further afield, local coach companies may have a programme of day trips. People who are disabled and require help with mobility, you can contact One Call on 01670 536400 if you would like information on mobility aids and other services to help with support.

Other sources of help and information

Carers UK is an organisation specifically dealing with carer issues, why not access their website for more information:

Carers Direct and NHS Advocacy Service- addresses concerns from patients and carers:

NHS Links

There is a wealth of information on the NHS website about carers and caring. Below are some links into the site that we hope you will find useful.

FInance & Law

Help claiming benefits, looking after your bank balance and understanding the legal issues of caring.

  • Benefits for carers

    Directing carers to the benefits that can help them in their caring role

  • Benefits for the under-65s

    Advice and information on helping the person you look after get the benefits that they are entitled to.

    Benefits for the over-65s

    Advice and information on financial support for older people with a disability or illness.

  • Carer's Assement

    How your benefits maybe affected after the death of the person you look after and what happens to their benefits

  • Other benefits

    Advice for carers and the people they are looking after on claiming a whole host of other benefits unrelated to their disability or caring