Who we are

We hold monthly committee meetings, open to all our members, some of which are also attended on invitation by health or social care professionals to share information and discuss current issues. Committee members also visit other carer groups, mental health service development forums and clinical commissioning groups to listen and feed in carer views. This has helped to improve attendance of organisations at our Open meetings and add contributions to our newsletter.

We had four open meetings this year for members and friends, incorporating talks, and consultations where carers are able to express their views on services in the hope of developing a more inclusive approach for carers. For example our April 2017 meeting included a talk about the new LION Directory of Services and in June Michelle Malone came to talk about the future of Crisis services. We also provide entertainment and discussions, with refreshments. These meetings are usually held during the day, with a buffet lunch.

We organise carer events or outings each year and this year we organised a ‘Autumn Solstice’ event in September at Middle Street Resource. This was a co-production well-being event with the Notts County Council and Middle Street which had service provider stands, carer activities such as Drumming, Tai Chi and therapy tasters plus food. . We organise other activities aimed at enhancing carer’s health and well-being.

We provide information and support to individual carers, whether or not they are current members of the Carers’ Council, at our Open meetings and by telephone to committee members. Some carers are referred to us by local Community Mental Health Teams, Carer Support Services and Voluntary Services.

We engage with statutory services, especially Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust, and Nottinghamshire County Council to provide information from a carers’ perspective, share carer experiences, and contribute to staff training. We have been represented at consultation meetings about future changes in Notts County Council carer support.

We also contribute to the development of services such as the commissioning policies of Clinical Commissioning Groups and local authorities health and wellbeing strategies. We are particularly concerned about the Crisis services following the Healthwatch report published during the year and followed this up with Notts Healthcare Trust.