Carers provide unpaid care by looking after ill, frail or a disabled family member, friend or partner. The help Carers provide may be physical, emotional or social care.

A Young Carer is someone under 18 whose life is restricted because of the need to take responsibility for a family member due to sickness, disability, mental health, and alcohol or drug problems.

A Parent Carer is someone who looks after children or adults with a learning disability or life limiting illness.

The help Carers provide may be physical, emotional or social care. It may involve a lot of daily input or more occasional help. You may already provide or intend to provide care.

There are an estimated 6 million carers in the UK, around 350,000 in Wales. Over a lifetime, over 7 out of 10 women and nearly 6 out of 10 men will be Carers (Carers UK 2001).

As a carer you may live with the person that you help, live nearby or they may be some distance away. Carers can be of any age and you may also need to juggle other responsibilities such as childcare and work.

At any time in our lives we may be called upon to look after someone close to us that has become ill or disabled and can no longer cope on their own in the home without our help and that of others.

As a carer it is often expected that you will be the main provider of comfort and support to the person that needs your help. That can be a daunting prospect, particularly so if the care period is likely to be long term. For thousands of people in Ceredigion this is already a reality. The Census in 2001 indicated that there were 7,494 Carers, 10.4% of our population. Of these 1,981 2.6% are caring for more than 50 hours a week.

Who Are Not Carers?

People looking after children who do not have a disability or life-limiting illness.

People who work in care - care workers, care assistants, medial staff and community workers.