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Carers Lead Organisation

Dorset Council is delighted to announce that Carer Support Wiltshire has been selected following a rigorous tender process, including carer and NHS representation, to be the county’s first Carers Lead Organisation. They will be known as Carer Support Dorset and are tasked with developing a first point of contact service for people who are in a caring role, unpaid. The service is a new additional resource for unpaid carers, particularly focussed on those early on in the caring journey to help ensure carers of all ages are recognised, feel valued and are supported to make informed choices.

Carer Support Dorset will work closely as partners with the Council and NHS Clinical Commissioning Group to devise innovative approaches which contribute to early intervention and support for an estimated 1 in 10 residents of Dorset who are carers. Carer Support Dorset as a Carers lead Organisation are very keen to engage with Dorset’s many voluntary and community groups to compliment and, where relevant, promote their respective offers.

This approach is drawn from years of previous listening to our own teams, carers themselves and local organisations and so will complement and build on the local offer for carers, continuing to listen and engage with carers themselves about what will help them most in their caring role.

Carer Support Dorset will work at pace to understand and make contact with the many existing local agencies, networks and groups which make up the local health and social care landscape. Most importantly they will begin to develop their knowledge and understanding of local communities with the ultimate aim to help identify and meet gaps over time to benefit carers. They will be recruiting imminently for a local team and are targeting November 2019 for a public launch. The new service therefore will commence in November and more detailed information will be available nearer the time.

About Carer Support Wiltshire

They were formed from the merger almost 10 years ago of four local carer agencies established in Wiltshire over 25 years ago. They have been providing a service for carers support and Care Act assessments in Wiltshire for a number of years as part of a contract with the Council. They are Network Partners of the national Carers Trust organisation and will bring a well-informed national policy perspective and welcome fund raising capability to Dorset. They bring an estimated £180k added social value equivalent to the value of the contract, helping the social care pound go further. They operate from a strong ethos of putting carers at the heart of their operations and are very keen to commence this project in Dorset. They will not be responsible for formal Care Act Assessments in Dorset however will help to fulfil the wellbeing element in the Care Act and the requirement for councils to ‘delay, prevent and reduce’ the need for more intensive / acute interventions.

Further details to follow.

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