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Carers Courier The Newsletter of Swansea Carers Centre

Issue 1 - 2016

In this issue... Dear Carer News & Updates Information Donations Past Events

p1 p2 p8 p10 p12

Making a positive difference to carers’ lives across the City & County of Swansea

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Swansea Carers Centre

is a specialist voluntary organisation providing support to carers across the City & County of Swansea. We support all carers of those with an illness or disability including learning disability, mental health problems, addiction, physical disability, dementia and other long term limiting illnesses.

Our Vision is to live in a society where:

Swansea Carers Centre aims to give much needed support and information to carers across Swansea by providing welfare benefit advice, access to grants and special funds, a counselling service, advocacy services, respite care, volunteering opportunties, carers’ mutual support groups, training, consultation opportunities and social occasions. All our services are confidential.

How to Contact Us

• The role and contribution that carers make to their families and to society is recognised. • Carers have access to appropriate support to sustain them in their caring role. • Carers are respected as equal and expert partners in the planning and delivery of care.

Swansea Carers Centre 104 Mansel Street, Swansea, SA1 5UE

01792 653344 www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk Office Opening Times: Monday to Friday 11am-4pm (lines open 9am-4.30pm) Answer phone service available out of hours Personal Callers (11am-4pm) Email: admin@swanseacarerscentre.org.uk Twitter: @SwanseaCarers To join our FREE email list to receive The Courier & other information via email please contact: marta@swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

Our Mission is to make a positive difference to the lives of carers We will do this by working in partnership with statutory and voluntary organisations and by acting independently in the interest of carers throughout the City & County of Swansea.

CHARITY NO: 1108865 COMPANY NO: 5352055



The Courier

This newsletter is produced by Swansea Carers Centre. Whilst Swansea Carers Centre has taken all reasonable steps to ensure that the information is correct at the time of publication responsibility cannot be accepted by Swansea Carers Centre for errors, omissions or misleading statements.

The Courier is circulated to over 3,500 carers across the City & County of Swansea. If you would like to receive this newsletter then please contact us. Alternatively if you no longer wish to receive The Courier then please let us know.

For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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Dear Carer

Welcome to Issue 1 of 2016. I hope you find this issue interesting and informative. In it you will find some information on new projects in which you can become involved; check out our ‘Developing the Skills’ training. You will also find an update on other projects, such as the article on page three, Time to Change or the article on page seven, Project Cariad. Make a note of the date of Carers Rights Day at which we hope to see you, and on two of our pages look for the update on our new staff, with whom you might have met already, if you have popped in to see us. Talking of new staff … may I first say a goodbye to Eleanor Norton. Eleanor had been the Executive Director of Swansea Carers Centre since 2014, led the team in some excellent work, and has now moved on to pastures new. We thank Eleanor for all her hard work and wish her an exciting and prosperous future in her new workplace. This means that we now have a new Director at the helm, and this issue of the Courier is a good opportunity for me to introduce myself to you. My name is Janet John. I am a resident of Swansea and have lived here for the past 21 years. Living here means, for me, that my heart and soul are here and that I want the best that is possible for the people of Swansea. And in this new role of mine, that means I want the best that is possible for the carers of Swansea. Having worked in the voluntary sector for the last 14 years, working across Wales and across our Region of Western Bay, in three other charities, I am delighted to now be in the position of Executive Director of Swansea Carers Centre in my home city. Over the past fortnight I have been busy finding out more about the work of the Carers Centre; what we are currently involved in and what projects we have on the go. And, of course, I have been meeting staff, trustees, volunteers and carers. I am thrilled to find out we have projects which have set up a choir, and a mindfulness group, and am delighted to hear of experiences we offer such as the Glass Workshop. I am looking forward to working with such a talented team of dedicated people, and working to support you, the carers. And so, over to you … as the nights draw in, and the cold sets in don’t forget that while you are looking after your loved one, you need to look after yourself too. Find that time to use our Free Holistic Therapy session. Find that time to get a flu jab. Join the choir or just sit with a cuppa and read the Courier; you are important, remember to look after yourself. Best wishes, as always,



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News & Updates

! s t c e j o r P New

We have received funding via Active Inclusion to support economically inactive carers within the City and County of Swansea to engage with personal development activities via our LifeSkills2 Project. Eligibility Criteria - Economically inactive - Having caring responsibilities - 25 years or older - Not living in a Community First Area

For further information please contact Emma Daniels or Marta Tome on 01792 653344 emma@swanseacarerscentre.org.uk marta@swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

What will be offered to clients? Clients will be offered tailored and confidential support to help them gain new skills, build confidence and reduce social exclusion. They will also have access to: - Job Club - Accredited Training e.g. First Aid, Manual Handling, - Soft Skill Training e.g. Stress Control, Looking After Me - Volunteering Opportunities - Further learning - Benefits Advice - Carer Groups - Advocacy Services - Counselling

The project has been supported by the European Social Fund through Welsh Government

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For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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News & Updates

Time For Change - Transforming

Lives of Young Adult Carers in Swansea cost to the state. Research in 2014 by the NEF Consulting indicated that investing in young adult carer support across the UK could save the state purse £141 million every year, with a saving of £1.77 being made for every £1 invested. In short, investing in young adult carer support improves life chances and does and will save the state money.” Trisha Thompson, Head of Grants and Funding at Carers Trust Deanndra Wheatland ‘Time for Change’ helps to support young adult 17 Years Young Adult Carer carers in Swansea who feel isolated and do not access the same life opportunities as their peers due to the demands of their caring role. It will help young adult carers get the much needed support, careers and education advice they need Swansea Carers Centre has been to be able to fulfil their potential. With our awarded more than £40,000 from Carers support, young adult carers will be able to make Trust, the UK’s largest charity for unpaid plans for their future and have the same carers, to help young adult carers aged opportunities as other young people 16-25 years to make life-changing The Young Adult Carers project provides a decisions about their future through its monthly drop in youth club, opportunities ‘Time For Change’ grants programme. including trips, activities and training, in addition to one to one support sessions discussing issues Latest census data reveals there are 315,000 around education, employment, health, finances young adult carers in the UK, but this is likely to and wellbeing. Our project staff ensures the be just the tip of the iceberg - many young adult Young Adult Carers are aware of their rights, and carers remain undetected and unsupported. support them to be able to reach their potential Research shows that caring for a family member in life - whilst balancing their caring roles. can have a huge impact on a young adult carer’s In total, more than £711,000 was awarded in this health, wellbeing and education. Young adult latest round of funding from Carers Trust’s Time carers aged between 16 and 18 years are also for Change grant programme, funded by The twice as likely to be not in education, employment Co-operative Group. or training (NEET). Recent census data reveals there are more than 30,000 young adult carers This money was raised by colleagues, customers providing a shocking 50 hours, or more, of care and members of The Co-operative during its each week. Charity of the Year partnership with Carers Trust in 2013. In total, 20,000 young adult carers’ lives “Young adult carers are at a crucial stage in their will be transformed through this work, running lives - juggling the demands of caring for a loved from 2014 to 2017. one at home, while facing the challenges of studying for exams, applying for college or seeking For more information about Swansea Young work. These are very stressful times and many Adult Carers Project please contact Alex Atkins young adult carers tell us they feel isolated as they on 01792 653344 don’t know what choices they have or how to apply for college or a job, whilst juggling the demands of their home life. These big decisions can affect the rest of their life and their future chances to work or gain new skills. The Time for Change grants to local organisations centres will enable carers’ services to provide vital support to young adult carers in their areas who are having to make life-changing decisions. We know that support for young adult carers works and has a huge impact not only on the individual, the person they care for but on the @SwanseaCarers

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News & Updates

f f a t S w e N Our I have been living in Japan for the past 2.5 years. I love romantic poetry. I have 2 naughty cats called Shelley and Keats (see above point!). I started playing the violin when I was 2 years old. I take part in a Park Run almost every weekend! I lived in the North East for several years and picked up lots of Geordie phrases.

e Young Adult Carers I have been running th 2015 for carers aged group since October ss degree in BA Hons 16-25. I have a 1st cla Work from UWTSD, Youth and Community rer Alexandra Atkins Carmarthen. I am a ca e Youn sis th pa em n ca to I g Adult Carers Project Manager myself so a as ce fa u yo s ue with the iss age I have been carers. Since a young g people so I have a un yo g tin or pp su d an k ng on involved in youth wor very excited to be taki am I s. ue iss us rio va in r Project wealth of knowledge Carers, along side ou t ul Ad g un Yo g tin or this new role and supp Worker Ruth.

Daniel Mathias istrator Advocacy Admin I am an Ab erystwyth University psychology graduate. I am curre ntly trainin g to be a Psychothe rapist. I Enjoy run ning and h ave comple marathon ted a 3 half this year My favour ite food is pizza! Someday I would like to learn sig n language .

Ruth Hegarty

Young Adult Carers Project Wor


Richard Chiplin Finance Officer Many thanks to our g to another Finance Officer who is movin y sector. post within Swansea voluntar nture! good luck in your new adve

orking w l a n io ss fe ro p a u Are yo with carers? at is on h w w o n k to e k li u Would yo sea Carers Centre? at Swan ! Join our mailing list Email us: centre.org.uk rs re ca a se n a sw @ admin 653344 or ring us on 01792

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For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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News & Updates


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News & Updates

Volunteering goodbye & Happy Retirement, Nicky! “It has been a privilege to work for this charity, but now I am looking forward to more free time for myself and my family. I have been involved with the Carers Centre from 2000 to 2005 and from 2011 to 2016. It has been very rewarding to meet so many lovely volunteers, to help them grow in confidence and to see some of them progress to higher education or paid work. As a carer myself, I am very grateful for all the time and commitment which volunteers have contributed over the years. I am also grateful for the support I have received from the Trustees, who paid my salary out of reserve funds when there was no other funding available. It has been a pleasure to work with 3 Directors, who were all very wise and compassionate people. And last but not least, a huge thank you to my colleagues. The never-ending supply of tea, coffee and good humour has always lightened the workload” Nicky Stonelake

Congratulations to our longest-serving volunteer, Dennis Nelson, who was short-listed for the Evening Post Pride Awards in the Lifetime Achievement category. Dennis has been volunteering at our Ty Conway day care centre for more than 20 years and was previously a table tennis champion and coach. As a child, he was evacuated from Mayhill to Pontyates, and now organises regular reunions for other evacuees. Many thanks to all our brilliant volunteers and a warm welcome to any new recruits.

day training 1 a d e t le p com .’ Volunteers d Handling n a g in v o ‘M iv Arthur, V y session on b d e t a it was facil k Service. The session a e r B g in r a f our C Manager o

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For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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News & Updates

Project Cariad 3 Years Providing Training to Carers In April 2013, Swansea Carers Centre was awarded money from The Big Lottery Wales to run Project Cariad, a 3 year training project that undertook lots of activities that aimed to help carers to: - gain confidence and skills, and find a way to have some ‘me’ time - Reduce stress levels so that carers would feel better in themselves - Meet other carers so that they felt less isolated

in health, social care, other charities and the local council. Cariad staff helped in the development of 16 different groups run by carers for carers, including ongoing groups in Mindfulness, Three Principles, Knitting, Aikido, and Harmony Singing.

What impact did all the project activities have upon carers and former carers?

80% felt they had gained confidence and self-esteem from the courses and they valued having had some “me” time. Around 75% of participants said they had lower stress levels after participating within Project Cariad. However what is important is that they also said they were coping better, even after the training had finished. Some participants We were pleased to work with C.A.R.P taught stress management tips to their Collaborations, a local research organisation, family members and found they had better who assessed how well we had achieved the relationships at home. Participants really targets & outcomes for the money awarded. valued having the chance to meet other C.A.R.P staff examined paperwork, carers - they felt they didn’t have to explain interviewed staff from other organisations their circumstances and developed a mutual and spoke with carers & staff who had been support network. involved in the project.

What did Project Cariad do? In the 1st year we worked with 170 carers, in the 2nd year 289 carers and in the 3rd year 284 carers. We delivered a total 314 training sessions – nearly 2½ times more than was expected by the funders! The sessions were varied and included feel-good wellbeing activities such as yoga, mindfulness & drumming, as well as practical skills training such as emergency first aid & manual handling. Project Cariad also provided free holistic therapies to 241 carers. So far over 20 volunteers have supported Cariad’s work, 11 of whom are carers or former carers. Cariad staff worked with many different organisations to give the best service possible for carers. Their target was to raise awareness of the challenges carers face to 160 staff, but they actually delivered Carer Awareness sessions to 495 people working


What happens now? Some of the carers groups will continue as they are run by carers – some have a small fee so they can afford to keep going, others may need some support from us to keep going such as use of a room and help with promotion or finding funding. Many organisations in the Swansea area now have more Carer Awareness skills to support carers, but will need future training to make sure these skills don’t disappear with staff turnover. The Carers Centre is looking for further funding so that these important parts of Cariad can continue.

A big thank you to all carers, staff and professionals who have worked with us.

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Information Liz, our advocate was travelling on a bus and sat next to an elderly gentleman with a large suitcase. "Self-advocacy is about enabling someone to get their own voice heard. For carers, this means speaking up for ourselves and for the person we’re caring for. There is nothing mysterious about self-advocacy; it’s just about knowing how to communicate concerns in a way that gives the best chance of getting a positive outcome" Carers UK, 2016 Carers UK have developed Being Heard: a self-advocacy toolkit for carers which is available online. You can download the guide and nformation leaflets please visit:


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They got chatting and he said he had been caring for his wife who had died some months ago, and he was now fulfilling his and his wife’s bucket-list. Thinking he was going off to France or somewhere near, Liz asked where he was going, he replied “Tibet” as he always wanted to meet the monks there. Liz was so moved that a 91 year old had such get up and go that she wrote this small poem: I shall not grow old, I’ll just age like a wine, Not cheese – cos that gets so smelly! I shall not grow fat, but pleasantly plump, And rest the said wine on my belly, I shall not grow petty, but expand my heart, And share love that is left with those dear, Old wounds I will heal and ask them to forgive, Hold a hand, give a hug and be near, I shall not regret many things left undone, But delight in all I’ve survived, And as the sun sets, raise the glass to my lips, And know it’s a life I have lived.

For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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Flu Vaccinations for Carers The seasonal flu vaccine is the best way to protect yourself and the person you care for from being able to care. If you are caring for someone you may be concerned about how being ill will affect you as a carer and the person you care for. If you are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person who may be put at risk if you fall ill, and/or if you are in receipt of Carer’s Allowance, you should be offered a free flue jab, according to government policy. For more info, please ask your GP


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Since our last issue we have received, over £1035 in donations from: - Carers using our services - Unison Swansea University - The Friendship Club - West Cross Community Centre - Humbrella Choir

We were delighted to take part in M&S’s Spark Something good for Swansea. The campaign aimed to inspire and motivate M&S employees and customers around the country to grab a shovel, pick up a paintbrush and take action for social good – donating time to their local communities to improve lives. Our project was to create a sensory garden at our day centre,Ty Conway. M&S kindly donated £1,000 for garden equipment, plants, compost and paint. On one of the few clear days in February, five M&S volunteers arrived to help us with the garden. Three of the volunteers plus Chris Tribe, who volunteers

at Ty Conway, started clearning the garden whilst two volunteers painted a small meeting room inside the day centre. Most of the day was spent cutting back plants and bushes, digging out a tree, painting a fence and two raised plant beds and finally - whilst we still had light - planting over 100 plants. Next stage - We are currently looking at ways to raise money for a ramp at Ty Conway to enable all our visitors to have access to the garden this Summer. If you would like to donate or fundraise for the day centre then please contact Viv on 01792 578158 ... page 10 ...

For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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DONATIONS Don't Donate now & Aid it! forget to Gift

Help to transform a carer's life £25 could pay for a carer to have a counselling session with us.


could pay for a specialist ‘transfer board’ to prevent a carer hurting their back when helping to move a disabled person between chairs, toilet seats and beds.

£50 could pay for a carer to have 3 hours

respite from their caring role and spend some time on themselves


could pay for a carer to attend a 6 week stress control course

There are over 30,000 carers in Swansea and we aim to provide them with the support, advice and information necessary to assist them. We rely entirely on the generosity of individual donations, trusts, corporate funders and vital funding from the Local Authority to help us continue our work. To make a donation by cheque, please send it to: Swansea Carers Centre, 104 Mansel Street, Swansea SA1 5UE. We will acknowledge your donation & send you a receipt.

gift Aid declaration – for a single donation to Swansea Carers Centre Please treat the enclosed gift of £ ------------------------- as a Gift Aid donation. I confirm I have paid or will pay an amount of Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax for the current tax year (6 April to 5 April) that is at least equal to the amount of tax that all the charities and Community Amateur Sports Clubs (CASCs) that I donate to will reclaim on my gifts for the current tax year. I understand that other taxes such as VAT and Council Tax do not qualify. I understand the charity will reclaim 25p of tax on every £1 that I have given. Donor’s details: Title ------------- First name or initial(s) --------------------------------------------------Surname ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Full Home address ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Postcode ---------------------------------- Date -------------------------------------Signature ---------------------------------------------------------------Please notify the charity or CASC if you: • Want to cancel this declaration • Change your name or home address • No longer pay sufficient tax on your income and/or capital gains. If you pay Income Tax at the higher or additional rate and want to receive the additional tax relief due to you, you must include all your Gift Aid donations on your Self Assessment tax return or ask HM Revenue and Customs to adjust your tax code. @SwanseaCarers

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Past Events In September, we had a Glass Workshop with the Young Adult Carers Project youth club and local glassware artist Sonia Hawking. The idea of the workshop was to create a stained glass window with a story behind it, as that has always been the tradition with a stained glass window.

Swansea Young Adult Carers have been surfing down the Gower and in October, attended “All About Me� event where they took part in lots of different taster sessions such as Laughter Yoga, Kickboxing, Self-defence, Soap Making, etc...

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For latest news visit www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

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‘Me’ Time

- Relexolog

y -Craniosacra l Therapy -Swedish M assage -Therapeuti c Massage

Swansea Carers Centre and its volunterr therapists offer free holistic therapies to carers every first Monday of the month. For further info and to book a place, please ring us on 01792 653344

During the carers week event in June people were invited to contribute ideas for a mosaic design. Some chose to write about what was important to them as carers and what they would like to see included in the work. Others chose to draw, paint and make collages from various thoughts and images, some common themes emerged. Trees and pathways symbolized growth and the journey of a carer’s life. Bright optimistic colours conveyed hope and light. Some wanted to show the variety of carers and those they care for and need for support. Also the importance of managing time was stressed. Carers can be on call for 24 hours a day and time for themselves is very precious. This mosaic is now attached to the front of the foyer desk and was unveiled by the artist Mary Hayman and the carers who took part in her workshop.


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Find the right support group for you! Swansea Carers Centre offer a wide variety of support groups for carers and former carers. However we understand that too much choice can mean it can be difficult to decide which one is right for you.

Holistic Therapies for Carers, various locations. Carers can enjoy a free pampering session. Therapies include massage, reiki, reflexology and craniosacral therapy.

1st Tuesday of the Month

Charity No: 1108865 Company No: 5352055

Monthly Diary Dates

104 Mansel Street, Swansea SA1 5UE Tel: 01792 653344 (9am - 4.30pm) admin@swanseacarerscentre.org.uk www.swanseacarerscentre.org.uk

1st Monday of the Month

Family support group for those caring for a young person aged 14+ with a learning disability - 10 - 12pm, Friends of the Young Disabled building, Cwmbwrla. The group is friendly, social and confidential. Each month various professionals from health, social care and education are invited to speak on a topic chosen by parent carers.

1st Wednesday of the Month

Book Club for Carers and Former Carers, 2pm-3.30pm The book club is open to carers and former carers. A chance to meet up, discuss the ‘book of the month’ and have a coffee and a chat.

2nd Tuesday of the Month

Mental Health Carers’ Support group, 6.30pm-8.30pm, 104 Mansel Street, Swansea This group is open to people who are carers or former carers of someone with a mental health problem.

3rd Tuesday of the Month

Mental Health Carers’ group, 2pm-4pm, Cwmbwrla Day Centre This group is open to people who are carers or former carers of someone with a mental health problem.

3rd Thursday of the Month

Young Adult Carers’ group, 6pm-8.30pm, Ethnic Youth Support Team [EYST] 11 St. Helens Road Chance to socialise, try something new and have some much needed relaxation time

All information is correct at the time of printing. Swansea Carers Centre reserve the right to amend the diary as necessary.

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