Our community fundraiser Rachael talks about the difficulties carers face, and how you can help through fundraising.

Before working for Carer Support Wiltshire, I knew shockingly little about unpaid carers – like how there are 6.5 million in the UK how they save the economy £132 billion a year – equivalent to the cost of a second NHS! I started to realise how many carers there were in my life who had selflessly sacrificed so much – health, career, relationships, happiness, mental wellbeing, freedoms – to look after family and friends they love.

Surprisingly, a global pandemic, social-distancing restrictions and a 6 week lockdown (so far) doesn’t help the situation. Carers UK, our national membership charity for carers, recently released some pretty shocking statistics (just to warn you) and overwhelming evidence of the increased difficulties carers are facing as a result of Covid-19:

  • 55% of unpaid carers feel overwhelmed and are worried that they are going to burnout in the coming weeks
  • 70% of unpaid carers are providing more care due to the coronavirus outbreak – on average an extra 10 additional hours per week (65hrs in total)
  • The existing 1.2 million carers already living in poverty is likely to rise due to financial pressures caused by Covid-19.

A combination of factors including the lack of social care providers, closure of local services and extended periods of self-isolation mean that carers are having to provide more care, with less support. Is it any wonder many carers are feeling overwhelmed, stressed and on the verge of burn-out?

We’re all having vastly different experiences during this lockdown – the impeccably choreographed dance-routine videos we’re seeing on social media are a far cry from the constant stress and financial struggles others are experiencing. One thing we do have in common though is that we need to help one another: however, and whenever possible.

Please help carers in their time of need by donating and raising money to give them the support they need during this time.

2.6 Challenge!

This is a new campaign to mark the London Marathon which couldn’t go ahead for obvious reasons. The 2.6 Challenge is all about raising money by doing anything for 26 minutes, 2.6 hours or 26 days. It’s so much fun and can easily be done at home. Here are some ideas but feel free to do whatever you like! Find more information here.

  • Doing a wardrobe clearout? Change into 26 outfits in 26 minutes and make a video to share on social media
  • Bring out your inner artist – paint, draw or take a photo a day for 26 days
  • Brighten everyone’s day – wear rainbow colours every day for 26 days
  • Bake your heart out – challenge your friends and family to bake your favourite bake-off recipe in under 2.6 hours. Ready, set, BAKE!

Donate any funds you’ve raised – BIG or small – to our Just Giving page.

All funding is guaranteed will be spent on supporting carers in their time of need.

If you have any difficulties or would prefer to donate your funds another way please do get in touch! Email Fundraising@Carersupportwiltshire.co.uk

Remember to share your fundraising experiences and inspire others to do the same! Post photos and videos on social media and and use the hashtags #2.6challenge #carersinwiltshire