All I want for Christmas. . . Donate All I want for Christmas? A few days to myself, a bit of time for me It’s been a year like no other, but some things don’t change. When we asked Carers what they wanted for Christmas they told us what they longed for most was the gift of time. Time for themselves. Respite from their caring responsibilities, time to breathe, time to take stock, time for a good night's sleep. “78% of unpaid carers are seeing the needs of the person they care for increase and 74% are worn out and exhausted." [Carers UK] Is it any wonder when you are caring for somebody 50 hours plus a week for £62.25 often with no holiday, lunch breaks or social life that time for yourself is in short supply. You can’t clock off when you are a Carer. "Mrs C's husband wakes several times in the night with many requests leaving Mrs C sleep deprived. At times she has felt overwhelmed with exhaustion, making her agitated, emotional and crying for long periods." Since the start of the pandemic time has been in even shorter supply as many Carers have found themselves having to cope alone without their regular support networks, invariably putting the wellbeing of the person they look after ahead of their own needs. Carers are twice as likely to suffer ill health because of their caring role. We are reaching about 1000 Carers each year. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There are an estimated 20,000 adult Carers in Merton and post-Covid that number is growing. With your help we can support many more. “All I want for Christmas? Time to sit down and do something I haven’t done in a while. Sit in the fresh air and paint a landscape.” Every day we work on behalf of Merton’s unpaid Carers to ensure they receive the respite and the benefits to which they are entitled and the equipment and services they need to make their roles a little easier, and that will give them a little more time for themselves. When Carers are short of time, we have the time to help carers to access information and advice and practical, emotional and financial support. At CSM we have time for Carers who want to talk about their worries or need to know their rights.. We have time to help Young Carers make sense of a parent or sibling’s condition; we give them time to be themselves, time to be children. Everybody deserves time to themselves. "All I want for Christmas? To be left alone. To have a lie in until 11, to drink a beer, order a pizza, play on my game console. Do whatever I want just for one day." That’s why, this Christmas, we are asking you to help us to make more time for carers. Stay connected to carers by phone and online to provide advice and reassurance Continue to work on behalf of carers and arrange emergency support Deliver workshops to help carers navigate complex systems and develop the knowledge and skills to help them care Help them access financial support including maximising benefits and a distribution of small grants Link carers to local support services to improve their wellbeing and reduce isolation Train other professionals to identify and support carers so they are listened to and gain the recognition they deserve DONATE NOW Please give generously. Every penny you donate will support our work making time for the people who need it most – Merton’s carers.