Carers Week 2005, taking place from 13 – 19 June, is planned to be the biggest Carers Week so far with over 3,000 events organised. The week, which is officially supported by many organisations including Carers UK and Help the Aged, has the theme of ‘work, rest and play’.
The events are not just for fun – they will highlight the needs of carers who save the UK £57 billion every year, and raise awareness of issues surrounding them.
“Anything that raises the profiles of carers, especially those of hidden carers, is something that should be supported by everyone. Carers perform an amazing service to this country,” said Janet Randles, from the Welsh Mental Health charity Hafal, who helped set up a Welsh Mental Health Carers’ Forum. The Forum, launched last November, supports carers from all over Wales. It campaigns for effective policies to assist carers in Wales, for carer-friendly mental health legislation, and it provides informal networking and befriending opportunities for carers.
As part of the run-up to Carers Week 2005, the week’s organisers are urging people to get in contact with their local MPs to hear their opinions on carers and ask them to sign Early Day Motion 8 to show their support of Carers Week 2005.
Many celebrities, including Pam Ferris, Gloria Hunniford and Graham Norton, have shown their support for the week and have spoken out on the issues facing carers.
“I was staggered to hear that carers save the Exchequer £57 billion every year. That’s the same cost as running a second NHS. Carers work so hard, they deserve all the support we can give them,” said Graham Norton, comedian and TV presenter.
The week will see a multitude of events happening throughout Wales. For more information about Carers Week 2005, or to find out what has been organised in your area, see the Carers Week 2005 website @