Billed as the first online resource of its kind, Upfront is intended to be a tailored guide to caring based on the individual needs of each carer. It gives practical and financial support as well as advice on how to balance caring with health and relationships.
Upfront is targeted at those new to caring; Carers UK estimates that more than 2 million people in the UK begin caring for a relative or friend every year. In total there are approximately 6.5 million carers across the country.
The charity has also published its annual Carers Rights Guide, which explains what carers rights are and highlights all the practical and financial support services available to them.
This latest edition (which is available for England, Scotland and Wales, with a Northern Ireland version to be published early next year) includes information on benefits, technology and work among other topics.
Carers UK is also using the awareness day to call on the public to ensure that carers have access to the necessary support that they are entitled to.
The State of Caring report, released by Carers UK in May this year, found that only 50% of carers who provide at least 35 hours of care a week surveyed had had an assessment from their local authority.
Heléna Herklots, chief executive of Carers UK, explained: “Important developments in the rights of carers mean it’s never been more important to make sure carers get the right information and advice about what they’re entitled to, when they need it.”
She also emphasised the importance of the new resources launched by Carers UK today.
“Taking on a new caring role can happen quite suddenly and can turn many families’ lives upside down,” she said. “When people take on a new caring role, they worryingly tell us that it can be really difficult to get the help and advice they need. Without this support, caring can take a serious toll on a person’s health, finances and wellbeing.
“That’s why we’ve created Upfront. We are also publishing our annual Carers Rights Guide to make sure carers are informed about any changes to their rights and know where to go to get the support they need. This Carers Rights Day, you can make a positive difference to the life of a carer by connecting them to Carers UK.”
More information about Carers Rights Day is available on the Carers UK website.