In response to the Coronavirus Pandemic, STV Children’s Appeal have provided us with a grant of £2,000 which will enable 13 Carers looking after the most vulnerable people in Inverclyde, to have a break from their caring role.

The Scottish Government has this week established the Community Wellbeing Fund to ‘help charities and others who require additional capacity to work with at-risk people who may be worst affected by the crisis, including homeless people and those experiencing fuel poverty’. Inverclyde Carers Centre was approached as an organisation doing this work right now who could benefit from some additional funds.

Unpaid Carers play a fundamental role in caring and shielding their loved ones. Shielding and self-isolation will restrict the types of breaks which Carers can access. We envisage breaks being heavily reliant on activities which can take place within the home. Staff within our team are particularly skilled in identifying and utilising technology as well as liaising with local companies and Carer Passport Supporters.

Criteria

We will prioritise funding for

· Carers of children or young people under the age of 21

· Carers who live with the person they care for

· School or daycare for the person has stopped

· Carers who no longer getting any break from caring

If demand requires the following criteria will be determine priority. There are six categories of risk - as agreed by the UK’s Chief Medical Officers - these are:

· Solid organ transplant recipients

· People with specific cancers: a. People with cancer who are undergoing active chemotherapy or radical radiotherapy for lung cancer b. People with cancers of the blood or bone marrow such as leukaemia, lymphoma or myeloma who are at any stage of treatment c. People having immunotherapy or other continuing antibody treatments for cancer d. People having other targeted cancer treatments which can affect the immune system, such as protein kinase inhibitors or PARP inhibitors e. People who have had bone marrow or stem cell transplants in the last 6 months, or who are still taking immunosuppression drugs

· People with severe respiratory conditions including all cystic fibrosis, severe asthma and severe COPD

· People with rare diseases and inborn errors of metabolism that significantly increase the risk of infections (such as SCID, homozygous sickle cell)

· People on immunosuppression therapies sufficient to significantly increase risk of infection

· People who are pregnant with significant congenital heart disease

Priority will be given to the above grouping but may be extended to Carers who are:

· aged over 70

· have an underlying health condition not named above

· pregnant

We envisage the purchase of goods or services as key to the breaks. Where possible goods will be sourced, ordered and paid for by Inverclyde Carers Centre to reduce any additional pressure on Carers and for audit purposes. Where this is not possible due to an existing service being expanded, our staff will obtain or verify costs incurred through confirmation email from provider or monthly bills.

Applications will be considered at the end of each week and we will notify Carers of the outcome of application within 2 working days.

The funding is up to a maximum of £150 of goods or services.

If you would like to apply for this break, please contact us on 01475 735180 or [email protected]. We ask that you know what you would like to do and have a cost for this before hand. Alternatively you can apply online by clicking here.