Friday, June 28, 2013

Carers First

Are you caring for an adult with a disability of some sort? Is someone caring for you because you have a disability?

If so, you may be interested in Carers First, an organisation that works in this area to support carers.
Their website is here and their newsletter here, and there is an update on the services they offer below.

Carers FIRST in Kent and Medway service update –June 2013

Name change!
Carers FIRST formally merged with Medway Carers Centre on 1st April and we are now known as Carers FIRST in Kent & Medway. 

Where we operate:
As a result of recent tender successes we are now providing
·         Adult Carer Support Services (18+yrs) across three areas, SW Kent, DGS (Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley) and Medway.
  • Young Carer Support Services (5-18yrs) across Kent, in partnership with VAWK.

What we do:
We help those who support for a relative, friend or neighbour who is ill, disabled, frail, or impacted by mental health /substance misuse issues, by providing information, advice, guidance, advocacy and emotional support as well as access to support groups befriending, respite, social events and training with the aim of supporting people in their caring role.

Kent Young Carers (KYC) is a new countywide Young Carers Service offering young carers respite from caring responsibilities, opportunities to socialize with peers and tailored support. It will be fully operational towards the end of July 2013. 

Communication and promotion:
Our website has recently been refreshed and can be accessed @

We produce a quarterly newsletter – the summer newsletter includes details of our activities and events for June through to August – which can be downloaded from the website; but, any professional wishing to go onto our professionals emailing list to receive this, is most welcome to do so.  We would just ask that they provide us with their contact details at the address below.

We have some new promotional materials including general leaflets about our services, referral postcards (with stand if required) and A4 size posters. Supplies of these can be requested from Camilla Rosam, our Information Resources Manager, by emailing

Contacting us:
Our new Adult Carers Hub went live at the beginning of May.  The main feature of this is a designated phone number for carers and professionals to phone which is manned by trained Carer Support Coordinators.  (Available Mon-Fri, 9-5.)
Tel: 0300 303 1555; email:
(Calls cost same as from a standard landline number, including from mobile phones.)   

The KYC Hub was launched in June, providing a single point of access for all Kent Young Carers.  This will process referrals and carry out initial assessments to identify the level of need for each young carer, as well as provide information, advice and signposting to young carers, families and referrers. (Available Mon- Fri, 9-5.)
Tel: 0300 111 111 0; Email:

Postal Correspondence:
Our Head Office is now at Medway Carers Centre where all postal correspondence, apart from that for Kent Young Carers, should be sent.  Our postal address is thus:
Medway Carers Centre, 3 Canterbury Street, Gillingham, Kent. ME7 5TP.
Correspondence for Kent Young Carers should be sent to: KYC 17-19 Monson Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN1 1LS.

Adult carers are welcome to self refer or, with the carer’s permission, may be referred by statutory or third sector partners, either by phone (via the Hub) or emailing our designated referral email address: 

Young Carer referrals, including those from family members, can be made via the KYC Hub or by emailing

Referral forms can be downloaded from the “Downloads” area of the website and returned to the email address on the form. 

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