Unpaid carers in Reading can now use a new Listening Support Service which a national charity has rolled out across the UK.
The service involves trained volunteers calling unpaid carers to let them talk to someone who understand the challenges of caring.
Carers UK launched the service during national Carers Week (7-13 June). New research for the charity shows that people caring for older, disabled or seriously ill relatives have been left exhausted and socially isolated by the COVID-19 crisis.
The vast majority (81%) of unpaid carers had taken on more care for relatives and friends in the last year, while 69% said their mental health had worsened and 71% felt stressed and anxious.
The Listening Support Service was first tested in Wales. One of its volunteers, Joanie, said: “Unpaid carers work so hard with little recognition and little thanks, and often have no one to talk to. To know that someone is listening to what you have to say is so powerful and can make such a difference to how a carer feels about what they do and about themselves."