By John Costello
I am delighted that the Manchester University Press Friends and Family series is contributing to Carers week 2009 by launching the first book in the series Caring for someone with a long term illness by John Costello.
As we begin National Carers week, it is interesting to note the results of two recent surveys announced recently. The survey conducted by YouGov, questioned over 2,000 members of the public about their beliefs and attitudes towards carers. The results revealed that the public rank carers alongside the emergency services in terms of their contribution to society. Six out of seven people (86%) believe that carers make a valuable contribution, behind only nurses (91%) and firefighters (90%). The overwhelming majority also agree that carers’ benefits are far too low, with over three-quarters (76%) stating that the current level of Carers’ Allowance is unreasonable. But when asked to estimate the number of carers in the UK, 8 out of 10 were unable to pick the correct figure of 6 million, with almost three-quarters (71%) underestimating by over 4.5 million.
These results indicate that the work and the important role of carers often goes unnoticed. Caring for Someone with a long term illness (Costello 2009), sets out to explain what carers do for people often relatives, and the importance of knowing what services are available and what sources of support they can expect. The book is based on a practical approach and designed to help those carers who often experience frustration at not knowing the best way to do things. I am delighted to contribute towards helping those who do so much for others. I sincerely hope that carers week 2009, is successful in highlighting the needs of carers as well as acknowledging the importance of being a carer.
Find out more about Caring for Someone with a long term illness