A six-week ‘Fife Carer Strategy Consultation’ to guage the views of and gather feedback from the area’s unpaid carers about the issues that matter to them has been launched.
There is a large number of people across the Kingdom who support or care for family and friends on a regular basis in an unpaid capacity, giving freely of their time and energy.
Their dedication is enormously valuable and their support helps a large number of people to live in their own homes and communities who might not otherwise be able to.
The consultation by Fife’s Health and Social Care Partnership has been launched ahead of new legislation pertaining to carers in Scotland.
In April the Scottish Government will implement the Carers (Scotland) Act 2016 and the partnership is developing a Carers Strategy for 2018-2021 to support unpaid carers in the Kingdom.
David Heaney, divisional general manager with the partnership, said: “We know that unpaid carers play a vital role in our communities.
“When it comes to shaping services and knowing how we can improve the carers’ experience of health and social care, we are taking a proactive approach.
“Fife’s strategy must reflect and respond to unpaid carers’ needs now and in the years ahead, so we need to know what to change, adapt, do more of, or stop doing.
“The consultation actively seeks carers’ input as we need to hear about what matters and makes a difference to them so whatever we do now and in the future is effective and meaningful as possible.
“This is an opportunity for unpaid carers to have their voice heard and I encourage as many unpaid carers to take part as possible.”
Mhairi Lochhead, from Fife Carers Centre, welcomed the approach and emphasised the importance of carers putting across their views.
She said: “It is really important that carers are able to say what their experience of services are, what helps or what could make a difference.
“Many carers might not think to take part in the consultation, but for Fife’s Carer Strategy to be effective, carers need to say what is important to them.
“We will be encouraging and supporting carers to respond to the consultation, to help ensure as wide a range of views as possible are gathered.”
The consultation runs until February 23.
Forms can be filled online at www.fifedirect.org.uk/formFinder and hard copies are available by contacting Scott Fissenden on 03451 55 55 55 ext 401698.