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Project information

A problem shared is a problem halved

Caring is often lonely and isolating, with many being restricted from leaving the person they care for, or feeling that even close friends and family members don’t understand their situation. We aim to offer peer support in the form of coffee mornings, providing an environment for carers to seek.

April 2015 - March 2016

Charity information: Carers Lewisham

Carers Lewisham logo
  • Need


    Caring can be an overwhelming experience, changing lives and relationships. Many carers report being cut off from former social circles, which can bring feelings of isolation and loneliness, in turn leading to physical ill-health and depression. Many feel that even close friends and family members do not fully understand their situation and the subsequent isolation prevents carers from making choices about how to best meet their support needs and removes an element of control.


    We will offer peer support groups in the form of coffee mornings, both general and specialist groups, allowing carers to meet and support each other in an informal environment, and connect to people in a similar situation. In addition, speakers will be invited to talk about various issues. Workshops will be offered to increase knowledge, allowing them to make informed choices, improve techniques for the physical aspect of caring and ensure they are maximising their own health and wellbeing.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To enable carers to meet, socialise and relax and support each other in an informal environment.


    » Provision of weekly general coffee mornings (refreshments included)
    » Provision of monthly coffee mornings for male carers, parent carers, dementia carers and carers of people with mental ill health (refreshments inc.)

    What success will look like

    Documented verbal feedback from carers throughout the year, and observation of group dynamics

    Aim 2

    To provide carers with relevant information in the form of workshops and guest speakers.


    » 1) Practical Workshops *8 – Healthy eating, back care, massage techniques and first aid (refreshments included)
    » 2) Guest speakers on relevant subjects from other statutory and voluntary organisations – assistive technologies, homesitting service, welfare benefit

    What success will look like

    Workshop evaluations and documented verbal feedback

    Aim 3

    To ensure carers are not denied access to peer support due to inability to travel or leave cared for


    » Cover cab fares when necessary
    » Provide sitters when necessary

    What success will look like

    Verbal feedback from carers, workshop and end of year evaluation

  • Impact


    Carers will develop long term networks, strategies and mechanisms to continue to care.

    An end of year survey will be carried out.

    80% Carers tell us they are coping better
    80% Carers tell us that they feel less isolated
    75% Carers tell us that they are looking after themselves and their own health better
    75% Carers tell us that they feel more able to continue to care


    Some carers will be unable to attend due to transport or sitting needs – Sitting service will be available and cab fares will be covered for those carers.

    Poor group dynamic – a Carers Health and Support Worker will facilitate the meetings to encourage open discussion


    Statistics can be provided regarding the number of attendees per coffee morning.
    Workshop evaluation reports can be provided
    End of year evaluation report can be provided
    Observation reports from staff members can be provided
    Carer case studies can be provided

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £6,025

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      Amount Heading Description
      £960 Workshop trainer fees Workshops to encourage carers to look after themselves in a supportive environment amongst peers
      £1,058 Refreshments Tea, coffee etc. for both peer support coffee mornings and workshops
      £1,110 Sitter costs Short respite care workers to support carees during coffee mornings and workshops
      £1,296 Transport costs Cab fares to ensure carers can attend sessions
      £1,600 Volunteers Volunteer expenses
  • Background


    Lewisham is a major, multicultural inner city borough of London, with a population of approximately 276,000. It has a multi ethnic heritage and pockets of considerable poverty; the “end child poverty report” named it the 11th most deprived borough in London and residents face issues such as high levels of unemployment and disadvantages in income and health.


    Adult carers aged 18 to 90+ years old. A carer is someone of any age who provides unpaid support to family or friends who could not manage without this help. This could be caring for a relative, partner or friend who is ill, frail, disabled or has mental health or substance misuse problems. Carers may even be juggling paid work with their unpaid caring responsibilities at home. The term carer should not be confused with a care worker, or care assistant, who receives payment.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Carers Lewisham has 25 years of experience supporting carers in Lewisham and are therefore the carer experts in the Borough. We have an excellent experienced staff team and an excellent supportive Board of Management. We have an excellent reputation in Lewisham

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Ulalee Griffiths

    Carers Health and Support Officer (specialising in older carers and male carers)

    Cathy Collymore

    Carers Health and Support Officer (specialising in parent carers)

    Aykut Koksal

    Carers Health and Support Officer (specialising in carers of people with dementia)

    Jey Sivathasan

    Carers Health and Support Officer (specialising in carers of people with Mental ill health)