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Support for carers

In the past decade there has been significant work undertaken by the Scottish Government to highlight the strategic importance of unpaid carers. Over the last 5 years The National Carers Strategy 2010-15 has focused on developing a consistent framework for delivering support to carers across Scotland. The strategy requires local authorities to have in place a range of services designed to provide carers with information and advice along with support now and into the future.

In South Ayrshire we have developed our own local South Ayrshire Council Carers’ Strategy 2012-17. The development of our own carers’ strategy has provided us with clear objectives to deliver support and information to carers across South Ayrshire. In line with this strategy the provision of support and information for unpaid carers is a key priority. The roles carried out by carers will continue to be crucial as we move towards the development of a Health and Social Care Partnership in South Ayrshire.

In South Ayrshire, an extensive range of supports for carers is provided by the South Ayrshire Carers Centre. In addition to the Carers Centre, many organisations exist to provide information and advice for carers who are supporting people with a range of specific conditions e.g. Alzheimer's Scotland. View a list of some of these organisations.

Following a carers assessment if you are eligible we can also support carers by providing services to the cared for person. For example this could involve providing formal services which can enable you to have a break from your caring role. This might be for a couple of hours to give you time to meet friends or attend a class or a club, or it might for a few days or a week to allow you to go on holiday.

These services can include the following:

  • sitting services that come to your home and support the cared for person.
  • day services , where the person you care for can attend a day-centre once or twice a week
  • a period of respite care, where the person you care for can be looked after in a residential setting for a few days or a week
  • short breaks for adults, where you and/or the person you’re supporting may go away for a short break
  • Home Care services, providing direct, practical care in the home

Another way in which we can support carers is to ensure that both they and the person they support are receiving their full entitlement of other benefits e.g. social security entitlements. We can do this through arranging a benefits check or linking you in with other organisations e.g. DWP or Citizens Advice Scotland.

Self-Directed Support

In April 2014, new legislation (the Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013) was introduced by the Scottish Government to change the way in which local authorities provided services to people who require support. This new system is called Self-directed Support. For more information:

In addition the Scottish Government has also produced a number of key documents:

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