TimeBank calls for volunteers to offer online support to carers

A carers project in Birmingham received 100 requests for help in just three hours – now it is calling for volunteers who  can offer online support.

Carers Together is run by the national volunteering charity TimeBank in partnership with Carers UK. It offers face-to-face mentoring to carers in the Birmingham area, and confidential online support to carers throughout England.

After advertising the project, staff were inundated with requests from carers who are isolated and struggling to cope.

More than six million people in the UK are looking after disabled, ill or older relatives or friends. It's been estimated that they save the country £119 billion a year. Caring can be a rewarding experience but it can also bring emotional challenges, taking its toll on relationships, family life and carers’ own health.

Halinka Wojtulewicz, project co-ordinator for TimeBank in Birmingham, says: “The volume of calls we received shows there is a real need for online support for carers, many of whom find it difficult to make appointments outside the home.  

We’d especially like to hear from volunteers who are carers themselves, or have caring experience, so they can pass on the experiences and techniques that have helped them in the past. No special skills are needed – just a few spare hours and access to a computer!”

If you are interested in volunteering, take a look at www.timebank.org.uk/carers-together, email carers@timebank.org.uk or phone 0121 236 2531.