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To mark Carers’ Rights Day yesterday (25th November), Deputy Minister for Social Services Julie Morgan has outlined how £7 million Welsh Government funding will support unpaid carers in recognition of the vital support they provide to the people they care for.

Assistive technology can help unpaid carers by reducing their workload and stress, as certain devices can enable people to live independently, which means less frequent visits from the unpaid carers and giving them greater peace of mind.

The support package will allocate £5.5 million to local authorities to provide targeted support to unpaid carers.

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It will further provide £1.25 million for the Carers Support Fund. Last year, this fund successfully helped almost 6,500 unpaid carers to cope with the financial impact of COVID-19

£20,000 will fund online mental wellbeing support sessions. Finally, £230,000 will be given to the Family Fund to support over 600 further low-income families with seriously ill or disabled children.

Julie said: “The physical and emotional impact of caring can be overwhelming. We share concerns that many are at breaking point due to the additional pressures put upon them from the pandemic. Thousands of unpaid carers have been supported since the start of the pandemic but it its vital we continue to help unpaid carers cope with the emotional and financial impact of COVID-19.

“The funding announced today shows how much we appreciate the army of unpaid carers in Wales who have gone above and beyond to care for family or friends and our commitment to support carers to have a life beyond their caring role.

“Unpaid carers play a vital role in our society, helping reduce pressures on the health service by ensuring people can return from and stay out of hospital. Their extraordinary work and contribution to social care is part of a £42m package to support the NHS winter plan.”

Welsh Government previously committed £3 million in 2021-22 to allow more carers to take a break from their caring role, bringing the total additional funding support for unpaid carers this year to £10 million.

Examples of how this money has been spent to date include £10,000 to fund the remodelling of day care for older people in Gwynedd which includes paying for flexible short care packages for carers and the individuals they support, and £32,000 to run a pilot scheme for parent carers to choose practical support which meets their needs in Swansea.

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