Welsh military veteran carers going without the help they need
There are 370,000 unpaid carers in Wales and 210,000 military veterans. Many of these unpaid carers look after military veterans, while a significant number of veterans also care for family members. Yet many carers are stressed and struggling with life without getting the help and support they need to look after their own health and wellbeing.
To mark VE Day, Carers Wales, in partnership with Age Cymru’s Project 3600, is launching a guide on entitlements and support for veteran carers and people caring for veterans. The guide was developed with the input of veterans and veteran charities and aims to provide unique information about the help available to meet the challenges that arise from caring within the military veteran community.
The guide includes information on identifying as a carer, managing the caring journey and accessing support. As well as practical information there are stories from real carers – both sharing their experiences of being a veteran carer, and family members caring for a veteran.
Caring within the veteran community can present additional challenges. The culture and experiences in the military mean people have coped with severe risks and are accustomed to self-sufficiency and sacrifice, often putting their own needs second.
There may also have been times in Service where personnel have been away from family and friends and lost touch with those who could help. It is therefore important for carers in the veteran community to know that they are not alone and that there is dedicated support to help them with their caring role.
Claire Morgan, Director of Carers Wales said:
“We are thrilled to have worked on this much-needed guide, specifically targeted at carers and veterans. It is designed to acknowledge the unique challenges that veterans and their families face when caring. Having given so much for our country, we want veterans and their families to know about the range of help that they can access to make their lives easier”.
Heather Ferguson, Project 3600 Manager said:
“Our research with more than 1000 older veterans across Wales highlighted the extent to which veterans provide care for a loved one. We are, therefore, delighted to be working with Carers Wales to produce this much needed guide that will support those who have served our country, and help them access the support they need”.