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Information, advice, supports and services

Carers in South Lanarkshire have access a wide variety of supports, services and information and advice with or without having an Adult Carer Support Plan or Young Persons Statement.

The Act determines under (Section 4) the responsible local authority:

(a) DUTY must provide support to the carer to meet the carers' eligible needs, and

(b) POWER may provide support to the carer to meet the carer's other identified needs.

Some services are determined by a carers assessed eligibility criteria when it is deemed to be critical or substantial (Duty), whilst others are available for all carers including critical and substantial and not excluding those who are deemed to be moderate or low or have had no part in any assessment process at all (Power).

Access to support groups
Your local Carers Centre has a variety of Carer Support groups. There are also a range of condition specific support groups you could join.  Reducing isolation helps your health and wellbeing. To find out about support groups, contact South Lanarkshire Carers Network (support groups) or Lanarkshire Carers Centre (activities and events).

Young Carers can access groups and support through Universal Connections and Covey. These organisations have young carers groups and host activities and events.

Access to information and advice
Carers meetings, campaigning, newsletters, web pages as well as information stands, information fayres and social media all help carers know their rights and find the right information to support and empower them. Find out more by contacting South Lanarkshire Carers Network or going direct to their Leaflets section. Many organisations can offer you condition specific information, you can ask for leaflets and literature from organisations like McMillan who have drop in’s in many of our South Lanarkshire libraries. Community Centres, GP surgeries as well as local authority Q&A’s keep literature and information for you to take away. All these specialist services in your area can find answers to your carer questions. If they are unable to help you with specific questions they will signpost you to the agency that can find you answers.

Young carers can get involved with the Youth learning Service or the Youth Council. We also have a Young Carers Forum where you can get involved.

Access to welfare rights
Our Money Advice Team help carers assess their financial situation. They can help you to undertake a benefits review to ensure you are getting all the benefits you are entitled to. You can ask one of the local carer organisations to refer you for advice about your finances or you can contact them directly and ask to get a benefits check at the Money Matters Advice Service.  As a carer you may be able to claim Carers Allowance.

Young Carers may be eligible to apply for the new autumn 2019 Young Carers Grant. There are grants and bursaries such as Education Maintenance Allowance or Hardship grants through the local colleges that may be of financial help. Check out your financial rights with Money Matters.

Grants for Carers
There are many charitable organisations that can help carers with equipment and financial help. Independence at Home can help people with physical disabilities and those with mental health conditions as well as their carers to get funding for essential home repairs, equipment and breaks amongst other things. The family fund offers grants and funding for items such as clothing, computers, breaks and more. Your local Carers Centre can help you seek out grants for carers.

Young Carers Grant
A new yearly cash payment of £300 for young carers who live in Scotland, are still at school, in further education, employed or unemployed is available.  Eligibility criteria and a factsheet can be found at mygov.scot.  Young carers can apply by Freephone on 0800 182 2222 or go to mygov.scot/young-carer-grant.

Training or learning
Courses can help carers gain new confidence and develop skills to manage their health and wellbeing whilst they are a carer, for volunteering or moving on from caring. You can find out more at Lanarkshire Carers Centre Training section. Another local organisation VASLAN has an easy to use resource called the Locator Tool. You can use this tool to find education/training that may help you to maintain your caring role. Online courses are available to carers with Open Learn.

This service can help to safeguard your rights, allow you to access information and ensure your voice is heard.  There are Advocacy services available for carers of all ages. Different services specialise and carers can get the right help and support by either getting a referral from one of their local carer organisations or going direct to Take Control (Self-Directed Support), The Advocacy Project (Mental Health) or Speak Out (Learning Disability).

Adult Carer Support Plans
An assessment can help carers think about what supports they may need.  The plan using the Local Eligibility Criteria will help you work out what level of support you have a right to. You can request an Adult Carer Support Plan and start your carer conversation with Lanarkshire Carers Centre. Social Work Resources can and will undertake the Adult Carer Support Plan for those carers who are deemed critical and substantial. If you wish to self-refer directly you can by making a request using our online form request. When you request a plan through Lanarkshire Carers Centre if the conversation highlights your needs as critical and substantial you will be referred on by them to the appropriate Social Work Team.

Young Carers Statements
An assessment can help young carers think about what supports they may need.  The plan using the Local Eligibility Criteria will help you work out what level of support you have a right to. If you want a Young Carers Statement you can complete the online form request. You can make the request yourself or you can ask an adult to refer you such as your doctor, your teacher or your support or youth worker.

Additional Support Needs
Carers can get both statutory and voluntary support to help them manage their caring role. You can refer to our Additional Support needs page and you can find organisations in the community such as ARCH and Hamilton Accies Parent Support Groups. There are many groups, drop ins, classes and organisations who you can be signposted to through one of our partner organisations such as South Lanarkshire Carers Network.

Black and Ethnic minority communities' information and advice
In South Lanarkshire we have a wide and diverse community. The HSCP are dedicated to supporting people from all cultures and backgrounds. Your local Lanarkshire Carers Centre have a dedicated worker who provides Black and Ethnic Minority support. South Lanarkshire Carers Network has a website with a range information that can be converted into a selection of languages. We also have a series of Carer Act leaflets giving carer information in both Chinese and Urdu that can be accessed from MEECOP.  MEECOP also offer carer support services.

Handyperson services
There are voluntary organisations that help older and disabled people in their homes. The Leap Project carry out various small repairs and jobs around the home. Care and Repair provide information, advice and assistance to help older and disabled people maintain, improve or adapt their home.

Carer Registration
Lanarkshire Carers Centre carers can apply for a Carer Registration card which enables carers to access a wide range of offers and discounts from a variety of local retailers, suppliers and services. You can also access leisure services through the card.

Drug and alcohol services
Carers can get support from Blameless, a local charity that holds support groups, fun days, activities and has a community café for families and friends of people affected by drug and alcohol issues. Carers can also source support through Addaction or CAReS and can submit a social work enquiry if they are worried about substance misuse.

Emergency Cards
Our local carer organisations both offer an Emergency card which you can keep on you. It lets others know you are a carer and holds emergency contact numbers and can give you peace of mind in case you have an emergency. Contact either South Lanarkshire Carers Network or Lanarkshire Carers Centre and get your Emergency Card.

Emergency Social Work Services
We know there are times when carers need emergency access to the social work services. You can get in touch with Emergency Social Work Services when the local social work offices are closed.

Emotional support
If you need support to manage aspects of your caring role, there is bereavement support or counselling through The Haven. They provide information and support to people affected by life-limiting illnesses and are based in Blantyre.  Cruse Scotland offers a service for carers to help them through the bereavement process through telephone, one-to-one and group support. The Maggie's Centre has local bases and online support for people suffering from cancer and their carers.

GP Services
Your GP holds a Carers Register. Your GP surgery offers appointments, flu clinics, information boards, Carer Champions at many local South Lanarkshire surgeries. Tell your GP if you are a Carer. GP surgeries refer carers onto services they may find useful.

Mental Health Services
LAMH provide community based support services, housing support, a mental health information line and out of hours crisis support. The local authority have dedicated teams both in the communities and within NHS and LA offices who assess and work with those with mental health concerns or issues Community Mental Health Teams.

When the person you care for is terminally ill
If you are providing care to someone with a terminal illness, it can be a very difficult time for you as a carer. You can get help and support from your local social work office who may be able to help you with Equipment and adaptations.

People with a terminal illness have specific benefit entitlements. You can access information about PIP (Personal Independence Payments) through your local CAB (Citizens Advice Bureau) or you can go to our dedicated Carers Welfare Rights Money Matters Team. Your local Carers organisations  South Lanarkshire Carers Network and Lanarkshire Carers Centre can both help you to get a direct referral for a full benefits check. You may be entitled to other benefits that they can help you apply for. There are a range of grants that people suffering from terminal conditions can apply to such as Turn2us and Disability Grants.

It is important that as a carer you get all the help and support you can when you are providing care at such a difficult time. Many agencies can offer support while you are caring and you can continue to access support when you are no longer in your caring role.

Leisure activities and services
Many of our local voluntary organisations offer a range of leisure services where carers can attend. Organisations such as Older and Active, Alzheimer Scotland, Lanarkshire Carers Centre and Happy n Healthy amongst many have clubs, groups, coffee mornings, art and therapy classes, mindfulness, pampering and a whole range of activities. You could also get involved with meetings and shaping services, helping make changes to the supports and services in South Lanarkshire with South Lanarkshire Carers Network. A wide range of local organisations and the services they offer can be found on the VASLAN  Locator Tool.

Short breaks or respite care
These are provided to enhance the quality of life of both the Carer and the person they care for.  Short breaks can give you time out to focus on yourself. Short Breaks come in many forms. You can find out more about Short breaks by reading our Short Breaks Services Statement or going direct to Lanarkshire Carers Centre who can help you apply for short breaks and Respitality in South Lanarkshire.

Emergency and future planning
As a carer you need to know that if an emergency happens you have a plan in place to deal with the situation.

If an emergency happens a plan can help ease your worries if you are not able to care for the person you look after either in the long term or short term.

Carers are able to create plans that can involve their friends or family or you may need the reassurance of involvement from the Health and Social Care Partnership in case your informal arrangements cannot meet your needs at any point.  The plan will hold lots of details about the person you look after that will ensure their details can be easily accessed if needed.

You can complete an emergency plan with the help of Enable Scotland.

Anticipatory Care Planning
Anticipatory Care Planning is about individual people thinking ahead and understanding their health.  Its about knowing how to use services better and help people make choices about their future care.  You can get this service from your GP or community nurse or you can go online at Health Improvement Scotland and search for Anticipatory Care Planning.