The contribution of carers has been celebrated at a recent public engagement event in Lisburn.
The event, organised by the South Eastern Local Commissioning Group (a committee of the Health and Social Care Board), invited carers and representatives of the community and voluntary sector, to come along and share their views about the needs of carers.
Those attending had the opportunity to put forward their suggestions about involving carers in designing services for people in the South Eastern area.
Dr Nigel Campbell, Chair of the South Eastern Local Commissioning Group (LCG), said:
“I would like to thank the local carers who took time out of their busy lives to come along and contribute to the event. We recognise that many people carrying out a caring role do not identify themselves as ‘carers’ and some can provide this type of support without recognition. However, being a carer can create a lot of pressure and one in ten of all carers in Northern Ireland suffer from ill-health themselves. This important event gave us the opportunity to listen to carers about their experiences and the challenges they face in helping or supporting another person who finds it difficult to manage by themselves.”
There are 214,000 carers in Northern Ireland. This number is expected to substantially increase due to an ageing population with research indicating that 6 out of 10 people will become carers in our lifetime.
“Clearly there is a substantial number of the population who will put their own lives on hold to look after someone. Transforming Your Care recognises the need for more practical support for carers and hearing directly from carers and understanding their experiences is an important part of helping the South Eastern Local Commissioning Group to design services which supports the health and wellbeing of carers”, Dr Campbell added.