Carers Week 8 - 14 June 2015

Carers Week is an annual campaign to raise awareness of caring, highlight the challenges carers face and recognise the contribution they make to families and communities throughout the UK.

This year the focus is on building carer friendly communities. Communities that support carers to look after their loved ones well, while recognising that they are individuals with needs of their own.

Find a Carers Week event near you or get involved by pledging to host an event.

If you look after someone with cancer, we have information and support to help you. Visit our carers section to find out more, or download our practical guide to looking after someone with cancer [PDF].

Carers Week 2015 - building carer friendly communities

Carer friendly communities are aware of the part played by unpaid carers within their community. They have some understanding of a carer's daily reality, that they can be under a lot of pressure, and are often hidden from view.

When a community is carer friendly, every corner – from the hospital, workplace, primary school, to leisure services and beyond – will be geared towards addressing the needs of carers. This means that if you're caring for someone unpaid, local services and systems will remove obstacles and make sure things are done differently so your life is a little bit easier.

'Doing things differently' could include an employer creating carer friendly policies by listening to the experiences of their workforce, or a GP practice offering alternative appointment times to carers unable to attend due to their caring responsibilities.

Carer friendly communities reach out to support carers where they can. Working together, Carers Week and all the partner organisations are committed to building communities like these.

Get involved in Carers Week

There are many ways to get involved in Carers Week. You could:

  • plan or attend an event
  • get involved with local Carers Week activities
  • get active on social media
  • let those who look after someone with cancer know support is available.

Visit the Carers Week website to find ideas, or for some more inspiration see who has already pledged their support.

Carers Week events

Events will be taking place all around the country during Carers Week and will include everything from social activities, such as pub quizzes, picnics and pampering sessions, to expert and support events. There are loads of ways you can get involved. Find an event near you.

Free resources and support

For free promotional posters, a step-by-step guide to running an event and a range of free information resources, please visit our be.Macmillan site.

Programme and updates

Each day of Carers Week has a specific theme. We will update you with what we have been doing as the week progresses.

  • Sunday - Launch day
  • Monday - Carers and families
  • Tuesday - NHS and Social Care
  • Wednesday - Carers in the workplace
  • Thursday - Carers in education
  • Friday - Older carers
  • Saturday - Carers and families

Tell us what you’ve been doing by tweeting @MacCarers and @carersweek, where you’ll also find tweets raising awareness of the issues and support available around each theme.

Do you look after someone with cancer?

If you look after someone with cancer, you may not think of yourself as a carer. You may say 'I'm just being their husband, partner, daughter or friend ...' Yet the support you provide is vital - from helping with shopping, dressing, or taking them to the hospital, to being there when they need to talk.

If this sounds like you, you're not alone. There are more than one million carers in the UK in a similar situation – people who look after someone with cancer who couldn't manage without that help. We understand how looking after someone with cancer can completely take over your life and we’re here to give you the support you need to feel more in control.

Find support

If you have any questions or would like to find out more about the support we offer to people looking after someone with cancer, see how we can help or call us on 0808 808 00 00. You can also visit one of our information and support centres to speak to someone face-to-face.

Are you a carer?

Are you a carer?

We're here to give you the support you may need to make sure no one faces cancer alone.

Find out how we can help

Are you a carer?

We're here to give you the support you may need to make sure no one faces cancer alone.

Find out how we can help

Back to If you're a carer

Being there during diagnosis and treatment

When the person you care for is having tests or being treated for cancer, you may face a range of practical and emotional issues

Making decisions about care

If you’re a carer, you may sometimes find it difficult to know how much support you should and can provide.

Talking about your caring responsibilities at work

You don’t have to tell your employer about your caring responsibilities, but if you do, it can help them support you.

Caring if the illness gets worse

If cancer gets worse, you may no longer be able to care for your loved one at home. Support is available to help you.

Making decisions about work

If you’re a carer you may want to stop working temporarily or completely. It’s important to consider the implications of your decision.

Your rights at work

It's important to be aware of your legal rights as a carer. Your human resources department may be able to help you.