One in five employees aged 45 and over expect to have to leave their job to care for an adult relative, according to research conducted by the pension provider, Aviva.
This equates to approximately 2.6 million employees who will have to make some sort of financial sacrifice in terms of loss of salary, pension and savings so they can take on caring responsibilities. The Aviva research also found that 20% of mid-life women were likely to leave their job to provide care, compared with 17% of men in the same age bracket. Mid-life carers face significant pressures with many caring for both an older relative as well as young children.
Worryingly, despite the large numbers of mid-life workers expecting to have to leave their job to care for a relative, just 6% of employers considered caring pressures as a significant issue faced by their employees.
The findings were provided by an Aviva survey of 2,000 UK employees.
An ageing population, and pressure on health and social care budgets, means that more and more people in the UK are becoming unpaid carers. The value of care provided by unpaid carers in the UK has been calculated as £132 billion per annum, equivalent to the value of a second NHS. Yet despite the UK’s rising number of unpaid carers, successive governments have failed to prioritise investing in long-term and sustainable funding for social care.
Responding to the Aviva research findings, Head of Policy at Carers Trust, Laura Bennett, said:
“Carers Trust offers its employees up to five days paid carers’ leave a year, as well as flexible working options. Combined with other support, this helps employees balance work and caring for as long as they want to. These sorts of policies need to become as normal as the ones offered to employees who have parenting responsibilities.
“It can seem hard to start the conversation, but talking to those we love about money, wills, Powers of Attorney and future care options before a crisis, can really help.
“Carers Trust has repeatedly called on successive governments to invest in the long-term and sustainable social care funding that the country needs. This would help many carers stay in work, and protect their future finances.”
The Health Innovation Network and Carers Trust have worked with carers to develop Time to think about you to help you think about how you’re feeling and whether you want to get in touch with your local carer service or GP for some support.
If you’re not sure if you’re a carer or whether you need support, see if any of the Time to think about you questions apply to you, or to someone you know. If they do, think about visiting your local carer service or making an appointment to talk with your GP.
Time to think about you prompts
– Do you feel you do not have enough time for yourself?
– Has caring stopped you from doing what you enjoy?
– Has caring made it difficult for you to work or do whatever else you have to do?
– Is your own health affected as a result?
– Do you feel unable to cope?
– Do you feel you are under too much pressure?
– Do you have no one to talk to about your concerns?
– Do you feel low?
– Are you sleeping poorly?
– Are you not eating properly?
– Are you tearful, angry and/or anxious?
– Do you have concerns about your own memory?
If your answer is yes to any of these, you can visit your GP or your local carer service for support.
Download the prompt card
You might want to download the Time to think about you prompt card and see if any of the questions apply to you.
The card includes a slip that you can hand in to your GP and/or your local carer service.
If you, or the person you care for, need extra help to pay for something there are many grants, funds, and charities that may be able to help.
You can search online for grants and other financial help:
- Carers Trust currently has a grant fund open for individual adult carers, aged 16+.
- Turn2us is a free service that helps people in financial need to access welfare benefits, charitable grants and other financial help – online, by phone and face to face. The website has a free and easy to use grants search and benefits calculator.
- Grants for Individuals lets you search online for funders and grants if you subscribe. Disability Grants has details of charities and trusts which give out grants to disabled people and their families and carers.
How to search for a suitable fund or grant
There is information on charities that support carers and benevolent funds on this website. You can also use the the Turn2us Grants search – make sure you give as much information as you can so you can find all funds that might able to help you, and the person you care for.
- Few people have ‘careers for life’ these days, so think about all the jobs that you have had in your working life. For example, if you served in the Armed Forces years ago it is likely that you will still qualify for help from one of their charitable funds.
- Think about the trades, industries or companies you have worked in as some occupational charities give to people who have worked in a particular trade or profession, regardless of the job they have had.
- Some charities help people with particular surnames or who attended a particular school.
- If you don’t find what you want first time, refine your search by adding and removing search criteria. You are likely to see different results.
- When you finish your search and get a list of funds that may be able to help you, check you qualify before making an enquiry.
- Also search for grants and funds for the person you care for. For example, if you are searching for help for a parent that you care for, search on your details and theirs.
For more information please click here to visit the Carers Trust website
Inspired by our partner the National Garden Scheme, they are running a recipe competition – to enter the Seasonal Ingredients Recipe Competition, send in your favourite summer recipe using ingredients that are seasonal.
To enter our Seasonal Ingredients Recipe Competition, send in your favourite summer recipe using ingredients that are seasonal for the time of year and that you might be able to find in your garden. This could be a recipe for anything from a drink, a snack or dessert to a main meal or your favourite dinner party menu – just try to keep it seasonal!
Our competition is running from now until 26 August and we’ll be announcing the winner in September. It’s open to all our supporters, carers and Network Partners. The winning recipe will also feature on our website, social media and the National Garden Scheme’s monthly newsletter that month!
Plus, we have some great prizes:
- National Garden Scheme yellow apron.
- £40 B&Q voucher.
- Bottle of champagne.
How to enter
To apply and be in for a chance of winning these amazing prizes, please send your recipe to our Fundraising team or post to National Garden Scheme Recipe Competition, Carers Trust, Unit 101, 164-180 Union Street, London, SE1 0LH.*
Along with your recipe, please also include a little background into about why you love this recipe so much and when and who you usually make it for.
Pleae note, the competition is only open to entrants who are 18 or over.
*Please also make sure you include contact information so that we can get in touch if you win! If you win, we will only publish your surname and the county you live in. If you wish to remain completely anonymous please make this clear when applying.
State of Caring report 2019 – a snapshot of unpaid care in the UK
Carers UK have released the findings of their State of Caring survey which show the huge personal and financial cost of caring unpaid for a loved one. (08 July 2019)
On top of providing tens of hours of care every week for family members or friends, more than two thirds (68%) of carers are using their own income or savings to cover the cost of care, equipment or products for the person they care for. As a result, many are struggling financially and are unable to save for their own retirement.
Two in five carers (39%) say they are struggling to make ends meet and more than half (53%) of all carers are unable to save for retirement.
The report is based on the results of our 2019 State of Caring Survey of over 7,500 people currently caring unpaid for family or friends, the majority of whom provide over 50 hours of care every week.
Read more in the full report here: carersuk.org/stateofcaring-report
Read the press release here