As a carer, you have a right under the law to have a discussion with someone from Adult Social Care about your caring role, and to receive support.
In Camden, we call this a Carer Conversation. In law it is called a Carer assessment, and you may have seen this in other sources of information for carers, or heard about it from other people.
You are legally entitled to participate in a free Carer Conversation if you:
- give up your time, without pay, to look after someone who couldn’t cope without your support
- are looking after that person and they are a family member, partner, friend, or neighbour who is ill, frail, has a disability, or substance dependency
- support the person with things like emotional support, cooking, cleaning, or helping to get dressed.
This also applies if you are the parent of a child with support needs.
What is involved in a Carer Conversation?
As part of the Carer Conversation, you will have the opportunity to talk to someone about:
- what can be done to make life easier for you
- in what ways your caring role impacts on your physical, emotional, and mental health, your work and social life
- what support or services you need.
If you and the person you care for agree, this can be combined with a conversation about both of your needs at the same time.
How will I benefit from a Carer Conversation?
As part of the Carer Conversation, you will be looking at what could support you in your caring role. The kind of support you need will vary depending on the circumstances between you and the person you care for.
Types of support could include being connected to other carers through our carers services in Camden, or other organisations in the community who can provide help or advice. Many people find that being connected with local groups is a good way to enjoy their interests with other people who share similar passions and hobbies.
You may be entitled to a one-off or regular payment to spend on things that will help you to continue caring. This could be for things like grocery shopping, wellness experiences, or even gym memberships to support your physical and mental health. You might need certain items or appliances to help with household tasks, and this can include assistive technology or adaptations in your home.
People often find that caring for another person can take a lot of energy, in a practical way but also emotional. As part of the Carer Conversation you will be able to explore with someone the opportunity for you to take meaningful breaks. This might mean employing someone for a few hours a week to help with some of the caring responsibilities you have, or other forms of respite care. It could be access to additional funds that enable you to take a short holiday, or even to do an activity that you love as part of your week.
There is no one-size-fits-all support, because your caring responsibility will be different depending on the needs of the person you care for, and how this impacts on you. For more information about different types of support, have a look at our Support that works for you section or arrange a Carer Conversation with Adult Social Care.
How do I arrange to have a Carer Conversation?
If you are a carer and the information above applies to you, or you think you might be a carer, you can speak to someone from Adult Social Care or Camden Carers to request a Carer Conversation.
Depending on the level support that the person you are caring for receives, either Camden Adult Social Care or Camden Carers will then arrange with you a time to have a Carer Conversation together.
Camden Council Adult Social Care Access and Response team
Telephone: 020 7974 4000
Telephone: 020 7428 8950