Carer Support Plans
It's easy for carers to find themselves so caught up in their caring role that they find their personal plans go by the wayside without them noticing. Carer support plans are intended to look at what the carer needs to support them in their caring role but also to recognise that carers can benefit from thinking about their own ambitions and aspirations and how they might work to achieve them.
What's in a Carer Support Plan?
The Carer Support Plan provides a guided discussion that looks at aspects of life as a carer. You're asked to think about how you are coping with the impact of caring and to think ahead to plan the support you might need in the future. The topics that are covered in the Carers Support Plan cover five main areas
- Quality of Life - Thinking about your own health& wellbeing; having a life of your own including work, learning, hobbies, a social life and so on as well as having a good relationship with the person you care for.
- Managing the Caring Role – Examining the extent to which you want to continue caring; do you feel you equipped, in terms of information, skills and equipment, to continue caring; satisfactions and stress of caring; being involved in decision-making by services; are you willing to continue to provide care?
- How you are valued by any services you come into contact with: statutory, third sector, public sector etc- Think about how your expertise on the needs of the cared for person are recognised; how your views are taken into account by services; how services recognise your needs as a carer; your access to services; having a positive relationship with staff.
- Planning for the Future- Think about the things you may need to do in order to plan for the future: planning for emergencies; accommodation (housing and adaptations); transitions; social care supports/services anticipatory health planning with a GP for the person you care for; consult a solicitor about legal matters including Power of Attorney, or Guardianship (Welfare & Financial).
- Finances and Benefits - Think about access to information about benefits entitlements and other financial advice – do you have the information you need and been able to use it.
Who sees my Carer Support Plan?
The person you are working with on the plan and yourself. In addition it may be important to share information with other people who can help your to achieve your desired outcomes. You'll be asked to allow this sharing before it happens. No one should see your Carer Support Plan without your permission.
How do I get a Carer Support Plan?
You can download a blank Carer Support Plan to help you begin to think about what you want to include in the plan. You can then contact your Social Worker, Carer Support worker or whoever else may be helping you to work on the plan together.
What happens next?
Once you have developed your Carer Support Plan and identified who can help you achieve your aims it becomes a living document that you can review and update as you progress. Sharing the Carer Support Plan with those who can help you is a good step towards reaching your goals.