A carer is someone who, without payment, provides help and support to a partner, child, relative, friend or neighbour, who could not manage without their support. Anyone can become a carer; carers come from all walks of life, all cultures and can be of any age.

The people they care for may:

  • Be frail
  • Be ill
  • Be disabled
  • Have a mental health problem
  • Have a learning disability
  • Have issues with substance misuse

Many carers do not consider themselves to be a carer. They are just getting on with looking after their mother, son, or best friend, and doing what anyone else would in the same situation. We recognise that carers are extremely important within families and communities and often help those they care for to live independently for longer.

Becoming a carer can be bewildering, confusing and frightening so at the end of this page there are links to local and national organisations that can offer advice and support to carers. Our carer e-learning course is currently unavailable, but a new course that takes a 'whole family' approach to the role of both adult and young carers should be available from October 2017.

If you know a young carer or you are one yourself, our young carers web page gives advice and information as well as links to other specialist sites.

singlepointofaccess@southampton.gov.uk

See also:

Southampton Strategy for Unpaid Carers and Young Carers 2016 to 2020
Carers in Southampton
Southampton Information Directory and respite care
Carers Together
Flexible working
NHS Choices - information for carers
Dementia UK
Alzheimer's Society - services in Southampton
MDF - the bipolar organisation
Rethink
SANE
The National Autistic Society
Challenging Behaviour Foundation