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Reaching out to carers during Carers Week

​Information, support and advice will be available in Waveney libraries next week for people caring for or supporting a loved one or friend with mental health difficulties.

The drop-in sessions, which will take place during Carers Week 2018 (11-17 June) at the libraries in Beccles, Bungay, Halesworth, Kessingland and Lowestoft, are being organised by Norfolk and Suffolk NHS Foundation Trust (NSFT):

Bungay Library          Monday, 11, June       12noon – 1.30pm

Halesworth Library    Monday, 11 June        9.30am – 12noon

Beccles Library          Tuesday, 12 June       9.30am – 11.30am

Lowestoft Library       Friday, 15 June           9.30am – 12noon

Kessingland Library  Friday, 15 June           12.30pm – 1.30pm

Catherine Phillips, Carers Lead for the Waveney Community Mental Health Team, and other staff from NSFT will be available to talk to people who drop-in. Suffolk Family Carers will also take part in the Halesworth event.

"There are so many unpaid carers in society and it's often difficult to reach out to them in a rural area like Waveney where transport links are sometimes poor," said Mrs Phillips.

"Looking after someone with a mental health condition can be tough and often isolating and carers often put the needs of their loved ones above their own, so they can tend to neglect their own wellbeing.

"We're hoping these events will enable us to signpost carers to services that can help and support them, either on a one-to-one or group basis, so they become better connected to their community."

Mrs Phillips, who is based in Lowestoft, said she also wanted to make carers aware that the Care Act 2014 had increased the rights of non-paid family carers.

On Tuesday (12 June) afternoon, Hope for Change, a service user and carer forum for the Waveney area, will host a tea party for carers, services users and NSFT staff in the Poppies meeting room at the Trust's Carlton Court unit at Carlton Colville.

Carers Week is an annual awareness campaign which takes place to celebrate and recognise the vital contribution made by the UK's 6.5 million carers.

Caption: Catherine Phillips

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