World Mental Health Day 10 October – why it’s important for carers

Saturday 10 October is World Mental Health Day and we want to shout from the rooftops that those with mental health problems deserve support, love and care!

This is a great day for people to talk about the prevalence of mental health problems in society – in the UK they are responsible for the largest burden of disease – 28 per cent of the total burden, compared to 16 per cent each for cancer and heart disease.

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We know, from talking to so many carers over the years, that carers often support someone with a mental health problem or find it difficult to cope mentally themselves.

Support groups run by Waltham Forest Carers, which is based off Boundary Road between Walthamstow and Leyton, include a Mental Health Support Group for Carers for people who support someone with a mental health problem. This includes depression, anxiety, psychosis, bipolar, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder (BPD), agoraphobia, eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), or any other mental illness, including dual diagnosis.

“Listening to the group sharing their experiences of caring for their loved ones made me think of the problems I am faced with. The session was so helpful to me,” said one carer after attending a Mental Health Support Group session.

Other support groups include: Bipolar Support Group, Black People’s Mental Health Association, Waltham Forest Hearing Voices Group, Social group for people with mental health problems, and various groups for people with drug or alcohol-related mental health problems.

But it is not just those who are being cared for who can suffer mental health problems. The everyday stress of caring for a loved one can be extremely hard to bear – fear, sleep deprivation, isolation, money worries, lack of personal free time, all take their toll.

“We realise how difficult it is for carers to cope both practically and mentally,” says Jem Wright, Information Officer for the Waltham Forest Carer Association. “So we have a range of support groups to help give people the help they need – people meet regularly and share the experiences, get advice and support, and the support of other carers going through similar problems. It can be a really great help.”

For details of upcoming support group dates click here:

Next Mental Health Support Group for Carers meeting:

Date:       Monday 16 November 2015
Time:       1:30pm – 3:30pm
Venue:    Waltham Forest Resource Hub
Address: 1 Russell Road, Leyton, E10 7ES
Booking is not essential – any carer is welcome to come along on the day.

The Mental Health Foundation also has lots of useful online resources. We love the podcasts.

Waltham Forest Carers provides a number of other services and activities designed to support carers – see our bimonthly Newsletter for more details.

You can contact Waltham Forest Carers Association on 020 8556 0857 or by emailing info@walthamforestcarers.com. Follow us on Twitter @WalthamWords or visit our website at www.walthamforestcarers.com.

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It’s #WorldAlzheimersDay – do you care for someone with dementia?

Today is World Alzheimer’s Day, an international event that seeks to raise awareness of Alzheimer’s disease – the most common type of dementia.

Recent research suggests that dementia is a health concern of increasing importance – one in three people born in 2015 are likely to develop the condition in their lifetimes.

People living with dementia often rely on the help and support of family and friends, and caring for someone with Alzheimer’s disease can be very challenging.

If you care for someone who has Alzheimer’s disease (or any other kind of dementia) and you – or they – live in the London Borough of Waltham Forest, you can access free information, advice and support from Waltham Forest Carers Association. We support people who look after a friend or relative who needs help, due to any physical or mental illness or disability, in Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone or Walthamstow.

Waltham Forest Carers Association runs a dementia carers support group (in partnership with Alzheimer’s Society Waltham Forest), and provides a number of other services and activities designed to support carers – see our bimonthly Newsletter for more details.

You can contact Waltham Forest Carers Association on 020 8556 0857 or by emailing info@walthaforestcarers.com. Follow us on Twitter @WalthamWords or visit our website at www.walthamforestcarers.com.

It’s #LDWeek15 – do you care for someone with a learning disability in Waltham Forest?

Monday 15 June to Sunday 21 June is Learning Disability Week 2015. This national annual event recognises the work being done to support people with learning disabilities, and the great contributions they make… as well as the inequalities that many people with LD still face.

If you support someone who needs your help because they have a learning disability, and you – or they – live in Waltham Forest, you can access free information, advice and support from Waltham Forest Carers Association.

Waltham Forest Carers Association (or WFCA) is an independent charity that provides advocacy, welfare and benefits advice, activities, trips and a bimonthly Newsletter to people in Waltham Forest who look after a friend or relative who has support needs.

Whether you support a child who has a learning disability or special educational needs (SEND), or an adult with a learning disability, Waltham Forest Carers Association can help you access the support you need around your caring role.

Carers in Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone and Walthamstow can contact Waltham Forest Carers Association by ringing 020 8556 0857, emailing info@walthamforestcarers.com or via our website.

It’s Carers Week and Waltham Forest Carers Association are raising awareness of unpaid carers in our community

Monday 08 June to Sunday 14 June is Carers Week 2015, a national event recognising the invaluable contribution of unpaid carers to our communities, and especially to our health and social care system.

This year, the Carers Week theme is ‘Building Carer Friendly Communities’, and Waltham Forest Carers Association will be holding information stalls in locations across the borough, in order to raise awareness of carers’ issues amongst local residents, as well as to reach out to carers who may not know about the support services on offer to them.

We have also hosted a ‘Sharing Good Practice’ event with local GPs, encouraging doctors to establish carer-friendly systems in their surgeries.

For more information about Waltham Forest Carers Association’s activities this Carers Week, visit our website, www.walthamforestcarers.com, call 020 8556 0857 or read our Newsletter.

June/July issue of Waltham Forest Carers Association newsletter now available, online and in print!

The June/July edition of The Waltham Forest Carer is now available to download, read online, or request in hard copy. If you would like all the latest news concerning carers and those they support in Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone and Walthamstow, click here to read the bimonthly Waltham Forest Carers Association Newsletter.

JUNE JULY NEWSLETTER

This issue is packed with things to do with the person you look after, in Waltham Forest and nearby, this summer… as well as vital local and national news, events, activities and opportunities.

Find out about our forthcoming support groups for carers in Waltham Forest, as well as condition-specific support for such things as dementia/Alzheimer’s, substance misuse (addiction), autism and other special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), mental health problems and more.

If you would like to be added to the Waltham Forest Carers Association Newsletter mailing list, you can contact us via our website, call 020 8556 0857, email info@walthamforestcarers.com or even tweet us @WalthamWords.

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week. Do you support someone who has a mental health problem?

Monday 11 May – Sunday 17 May is Mental Health Awareness Week, a national event that aims to raise awareness of mental health problems and mental wellbeing. There are number of events and activities taking place locally – find out more here.

If you care for someone who experiences mental health difficulties, who needs your help because their illness makes it harder for them to manage alone, and you (or they) live in the London Borough of Waltham Forest, you can access free information, advice and support from Waltham Forest Carers Association.

Waltham Forest Carers Association supports unpaid (or ‘family’) carers of people who have a health condition or disability, including carers of people who experience mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, psychosis, bipolar, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder (BPD), agoraphobia, eating disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), or any other mental illness, including dual diagnosis with substance misuse (addiction).

Waltham Forest Carers Association also provides services that allow carers to safeguard their own mental health, such as support groups, advocacy, welfare and benefit advice, massage, yoga and other exercise classes, trips, activities and a newsletter full of activities and opportunities for carers in the local area. We even have a dedicated support group for people who care for someone with a mental health condition, and can offer information about other, specialist, support services that carers or those they support can access in Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone and Walthamstow.

Contact Waltham Forest Carers Association on 020 8556 0857 or email info@walthamforestcarers.com for more information.

This week is Deaf Awareness Week. Do you care for someone who is deaf or has hearing loss?

Monday 04 May to Sun 10 May is Deaf Awareness Week, and people and groups across the country are raising awareness of issues surrounding hearing loss and deafness. Matters such as access to employment, public transport, and television subtitles are among those being highlighted by campaigners.

If you support someone who needs your help because of a hearing impairment, and you (or they) live in Waltham Forest, you can access free information, advice and support from Waltham Forest Carers Association.

Waltham Forest Carers Association provides services including:

  • Welfare and benefits advice
  • Advocacy
  • Support groups
  • Trips and activities
  • Massages and exercise classes
  • A bimonthly newsletter, packed with national and local news, events and opportunities

All these services are free to unpaid carers who live – or support someone who lives – in Chingford, Leyton, Leytonstone or Walthamstow.

If you support someone who needs your help due to hearing loss, or any other health condition, Waltham Forest Carers Association can help you access the services you need to enjoy a life outside caring, and make your caring role sustainable for you and the person you support.

Contact Waltham Forest Carers Association on 020 8556 0857 or at info@walthamforestcarers.com for more information.