A West Sussex carer who has benefitted from putting a contingency plan in place has encouraged others to follow her example.
Eurfron Jones said having a plan in place has given both her and her husband Malcolm peace of mind, knowing he will still receive the support he needs should she unexpectedly be unable to provide him with care.
She has encouraged other friend and family carers to register with Carers Support West Sussex – a charity that works closely with West Sussex County Council – which offers unpaid carers information and guidance along with practical and emotional support.
Her message coincides with Carers Week, which takes place from 5 to 11 June. The theme this year is ‘Recognising and supporting carers in the community’.
Ms Jones said: “I’d really encourage other carers who don’t have plans in place to think about it. I remember the conversation I had with Carers Support West Sussex when they asked ‘Have you thought about what might happen should anything happen to you?’. It had never entered my head that anything would happen to me.
“I think it’s really important that people know that I’m a carer, particularly in the circumstances that I’m not around.
“Carers Support West Sussex have just been so wonderful in many ways. If you are a carer, please reach out to them because they’ve helped us enormously.”
Ms Jones has shared her experience and advice in a new video which is available to watch on the West Sussex County Council YouTube channel.
Amanda Jupp, Cabinet Member for Adults’ Services, said: “We’re committed to building connections with more people like Eurfron, who provide vital care for family and friends.
“We want them to take the lead on decisions that help them to enjoy independent and fulfilling lives and help them get all the support they are entitled to.”
You can register with Carers Support West Sussex on its website, where you can also find useful tips for developing a contingency plan. These include carrying a carers emergency contact card when you are out and about.
Sonia Mangan, Chief Executive of Carers Support West Sussex, said: “Our carer emergency card serves as a prompt to make an emergency plan and offers carers peace of mind, knowing their cared for will be in safe hands should the carer be involved in an accident or suddenly taken ill.
“Having important information in one place and sharing that information with trusted family members, friends and/or health and care professionals makes good sense.
“We don’t want you to be daunted so get in touch with Carers Support West Sussex to get help in making that plan.”
There is also emotional and practical support available to young carers under the age of 18, provided by the county council’s West Sussex Young Carers Service.