Care for carers
Carers zone Jackie Weeks became her mum’s main carer when her stepdad died suddenly two years ago.
Jackie, who was a care support worker, found that she was working round the clock in both her paid and unpaid roles.
Her mum, Gisela, who is 75, is blind, diabetic and in a wheelchair and was able to move in with her daughter and family while her house was being sold.
Gisela later moved into a warden-controlled flat just down the road from Jackie, who visits her every day to help with a variety of tasks, such as checking her blood sugar, ensuring she takes her medication, doing her shopping, cooking and cleaning.
“Having a full-time job is easier because you have a start time and a stop time, but when you’re a carer, you don’t,” said Jackie, who lives in Salisbury.
Thankfully, with the help of Carers Support Wiltshire, which works in conjunction with Carers Trust, Jackie occasionally has a chance to catch up with other carers over coffee and have a short break away from her caring role.
“Nothing that I do is hard work but it’s a 24-7 role – that’s the hard thing about it and the carer support I now receive is great. I hadn’t realised there are organisations that do that.
“Caring for your elderly parent is draining, but she’s mine and I’ll always look after her. The elderly really do deserve to be taken care of in the best possible way.”