Carers Strategy

Closed 25 Sep 2015

Opened 17 Aug 2015

Results expected 16 Oct 2015

Feedback updated 23 May 2016

We asked


Sheffield City Council worked with a wide range of partners and agencies in order to produce the new ‘Young Carer, Parent and Adult Carer Strategy (the Strategy) together. This included carers, who are experts due to their experience of caring for someone. We used carers’ feedback to help decide how we should plan to make things better for carers from now until 2020. The Strategy and other documents providing further background can be downloaded here:

The Strategy has 6 principles, these are the foundations that we will go back to in order to drive our actions and develop services that are needed to improve carers’ lives.   

A carer is ‘Somebody who provides support or who looks after a family member, partner or friend who needs help because of their age, physical or mental illness, or disability. This would not usually include someone paid or employed to carry out that role, or someone who is a volunteer.’ (Care and Support Statutory Guidance).

We have spoken to many carers over the last 6 months to help understand what we should focus on and prioritise for carers who live in Sheffield. The feedback has been used to give direction to the Strategy and it is also helping Sheffield City Council think about what services we need to buy to help and support our carers. We have produced a document called a Commissioning Plan that gives detail about our plans for future services that the Council will pay for. We have also use the information from the questionnaires carers completed to plan how we can best support carers using the money we have.

We Asked

In the questionnaire and when we’ve been talking to carers we have asked what carers think about the services that currently help them. We also asked about how future services could work. The feedback has helped us create detailed plans that respond to what carers have been telling us they need. We asked about current services, to help us understand what is working well or not working well so we can take the learning into future services. We also wanted to know if carers understood their rights to an assessment now the Care Act has been passed into law.

You said

Carers told us that:

  1. Future support services should link with health services to help identify and get information to carers sooner.
  1. Information should be relevant and timely.
  1. They want short breaks from caring.
  1. Support to plan for emergencies is needed.
  1. They want help to stay well through regular health checks.
  1. The Carers Centre newsletter is the most important existing service (showing the value of good information).
  1. They don’t always know what existing services are available.
  1. Health and social care systems are difficult to understand.
  1. At times practical support like help to fill in forms would be really useful.
  1. A number of carers said they don’t realise their right to a carer’s assessment.
  1. Caring can have a negative impact financially.


We did

We are responding to what you said by:

1. Working with our existing carer support services to strengthen links with health services. We will also think about how we can work closely with health services when we fund our next carer support service(s). Sheffield Teaching Hospitals and the Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group can also help us to support carers better and are key partners in developing the action plans which will be created in response to the Carers’ Strategy.

2. Having a principle in the new strategy which seeks to improve access to relevant and timely information. This will be addressed in the action plan. Our new ‘Sheffield Directory’ (online information portal) is being developed with carers to make sure it meets their information needs. The carers section of the Sheffield Directory can be found here:

 How we link with health services and provide information to carers e.g. newsletter will be picked up by our commissioning Plan too.

3. Currently offering a respite service provided by Making space and there is a Short Breaks Fund for carers which can be applied for via the Carers Centre. We will continue to talk with carers about what they need in terms of short break services and this will help us complete our Commissioning Plan which will help to create future short break services. There is also a short breaks advice page on the Sheffield Directory which can be found here:

4. Providing additional support to complete the ‘In Safe Hands’ emergency plan available now through Making Space respite hubs as well as the carers centre (if needed). Further information on In Safe Hands can be found here:

5. Working with health services when creating the detailed action plans for the carers’ strategy. How we can support carers to access health checks will be planned in more detail.

6. Taking this into account when we decide what our future carers services should provide.

7. Addressing this with the Strategy action plan, which will seek to improve how easy it is to access information so carers can be aware of what support services are available. How new services are marketed will also be considered in the Commissioning Plan. We will continue to work with carers to help us provide solutions.

8. Setting up a Carers Service Improvement Forum so carers can discuss Adult social Care issues so that things can be improved. There are now Carer Champions within social work teams. Both the Strategy and the Commissioning Plan will help to improve how easy it is for carers to get information about and move through health and social care.

9. Expanding support to get help completing forms as Making Space will now also do this via their respite hubs which carers can attend. The Carers in Sheffield service can also provide support completing forms. This need will be something that is considered when we commission our future support services;

10. Working with social workers to make sure they’re offering assessments to carers and know how to explain the benefits of having one. There is also a carer’s champion that social workers can discuss any queries they have with. Carers understanding their rights is a principle of the new Carers Strategy and we will be developing more detailed plans to improve this during 2016. Advice is also being given by our current carer support services Carers in Sheffield and the respite service provided by Making Space.

11. In Summer 2016 we will launch a Carers Access Card. With this scheme carers get a card and then all shops that sign up to the scheme provide a discount to carers when they produce the card. Carers can also find information on the Carers UK national carer discount scheme CarerSmart here:   







You can complete this questionnaire anonymously - you only need to give your details if you want to receive feedback or  be included in other activities.

You do not need to complete every question but we would like as many views as possible

Most of us will have caring responsibilities at one or more stages in our lives.

Do you spend time helping a partner, family member, friend or neighbour due to illness, disability, frailty or addiction?

The care you provide may be personal, practical, emotional or supervisory and is unpaid.

If this applies to you ... then you are a carer, regardless of whether or not the person you care for is a close relative.

In Sheffield ....

  • there are 57,373 carers - 1 in 10 people
  • 55 people become a carer everyday

Through completing this questionnaire, you will help decide the priorities and tasks we need to achieve to make life better for carers over the next couple of years. (e.g. respite, information, advice, support groups).


Why your views matter

The VISION for carers in Sheffield:

'Carers are recognised for their contribution to society, as vital partners in care, and are supported to reach their full potential and lead the lives they want'

We have listened to carers in Sheffield and they have told us the following is important:

  • My identity as a carer – having the information I need, when I need it
  • Impartial advice to help me through the maze
  • Services for the person I care for that understand, value and respect me
  • Feeling in control and safe, planning for emergencies
  • Time for me – a social life, continue to work, my own health
  • Not to be in financial hardship


The questionnaire is split into the following sections

  • What services would you like to see in the future?
  • What do you think of existing Carers Services?
  • A bit about you
  • Keeping in touch


Alternative formats

You can telephone 0114 273 4746 or email: to:

  • complete a survey over the phone
  • request alternative formats and community languages
  • request more paper copies of the survey
  • ask about us coming to your group to discuss the proposals

What happens next

The Carers Strategy and Action Plan will outline the tasks we need to achieve to make life better for carers over the next souple of years.

The ansers to the Questionnaire will also contribute to the Commissioning Strategy, which will decide what Carers Services are bought for you for the next 3 years (e.g. respite, information, advice, support groups).


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