Being a Family Carer
The following pages give information about the experience of being a family carer, what support is available, and some frequently asked questions.
Support for you
- Family Support Service - our Family Support Team offer a listening ear and provide free information about challenging behaviour to anyone who supports someone with a severe learning disability. You can read more about this here.
- Family Carers' Email Network - the Family Carers’ Email Network enables you to be in touch with a number of families around the UK. You can share experiences, information and receive support. Please see here for more information, including an application form.
- Family Linking Scheme - the Family Linking Scheme can match you with a family carer Link volunteer to speak to on the phone regularly, who having also been in a similar situation, may be able to offer information and useful ideas. See here for an application form.
Resources about being a Family Carer
This information sheet looks at the impact caring can have on families and where families can access support.
Details of organisations, books, blogs and information that family carers may find useful.
Frequently Asked Questions about Being a Family Carer
"Do I have to do this alone?"
- read our answer to this frequently asked question, and find out about Circles of Support and how you could build one with your relative.
"I'm reaching crisis point and need a break - what can I do?"
- this FAQ provides information about what rights family carers have to short breaks, where to find information about what short breaks services are available in your local area, and a summary of the wide range of short break services that are available, and can be used flexibly to meet your family's needs
"My relative has been excluded from local short break services because of his / her challenging behaviour - what else can I do?"
- families who find themselves in this situation may feel like they have no other options. However, there are a number of things you can do to make sure you have access to short breaks if you need them. This FAQ explains more.
- a difficult period of transition may occur when a parent or other family care giver passes away. This FAQ aims to provide some helpful tips for planning ahead, and information about what possible financial and housing plans can be put in place to protect your relative in the future.
Read about other family carers' experiences of supporting a relative with a severe learning disability and behaviour that challenges.