Practical support services
As well as services aimed specifically at carers, there are a variety of other general services available in Derbyshire that can help make your life easier.
Time Swap Scheme
Derbyshire County Council have developed a Time Swap Scheme. Anyone can join and you can build up ‘time credits’ by sharing a skill or helping someone else.
You can then trade in the time you have spent to get some help yourself. So perhaps you can help someone to fill in a form, give someone a lift, write or translate a letter and in return you can get someone to sit and have a chat with the person you look after while you go out for an hour. Or you could get help with your decorating, someone to do your hair or get your shopping. The possibilities are endless. For more information contact the service on Tel: 01629 532409 or read the Time Swap leaflet for carers.
Home library service for carers - is offered as a service to people who are unable to visit a library themselves, due to a health problem or because of their caring responsibilities. Library staff or volunteers can visit your home and deliver books, audio books or CDs. They can also provide advice about other online resources. For further information Tel: 01629 533 444 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you are able to get to the library on behalf of the person you care for, you are entitled to take home 24 books for them at a time and you won't be charged any late fees. Speak to your local library for further information.
Handy Van Scheme
The Handy Van Scheme is open to those who are 60 and over, or vulnerable people who are referred by Derbyshire County Council Adult Care and partner organisations. If you are over 60 you can phone and ask for a free visit to your home by the van for:
- Free smoke alarm checks and fire safety advice, including escape planning
- Falls prevention advice
- Practical tasks – such as changing light bulbs, securing carpets and removing or hanging curtains
- Fitting of keysafes, grab rails and Telecare (there may be a charge for these items).
Each eligible household can access this free service twice a year. Please note some materials may need to be purchased by the occupier. Tel: 0203 535 4999 (calls are charged at a local rate)
Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service have a self assessment tool on their website that lets you check how fire safe your house is. There is also advice about making a escape plan to get you and the person you care for out in the event of a fire. The Handy Van Service (see above) may also be able to advise you about fire safety and check or fit smoke alarms.
Need a Bit of Help at Home?
Derbyshire County Council Adult Care have developed a new leaflet called Need a Bit of Help at Home aimed at people who are just starting to need a bit of support at home. You can order a paper copy this and other Adult Care publications using the Adult Care leaflet order form.
Debt and money advice
The Welfare Rights Service offer free welfare benefits check to ensure you are receiving all the benefits you are entitled to. They can also offer support with appeals against claim decisions and help you get in touch with debt and financial advice. You can contact the helpline on tel: 01629 531535 Monday to Friday between 11am and 4.30pm. Or you can email: email@example.com
The Derbyshire Discretionary Fund may be able to help you during an emergency or crisis situation and to support you to cope with exceptional pressure when you have no other source of funding.
Managing debt - If you are worrying about managing your money or feel things are getting out of control, then the sooner you begin to tackle the problem the better. The Derbyshire County Website has a search facility so you can look for providers of debt advice in your local area
Derbyshire Citizens Advice
The Citizens Advice service offers free, confidential advice on any issue, including housing, employment, benefits and debt, care issues, families and relationships, energy efficiency. They have advice centres and outreach clinics around the county. Find your nearest by searching the Carers Directory for advice lines and/or drop-in services in your area.
The local Citizens Advice helpline telephone numbers are also listed on the online community and advice lines page.
Derbyshire Trusted Trader can help you find honest and reliable traders who commit to doing a good job for a fair price. Traders are monitored by Derbyshire County Council Trading Standards Department.
You’ll find plumbers, builders, roofers, decorators, joiners, electricians, gardeners, retailers and many more service providers on the register.
Derbyshire Connect Services offer a service that enables people who would normally struggle to use public transport to get out and do their shopping and access essential services. Vehicles are wheelchair accessible and pick people up from their homes. Drivers are fully trained and can offer a helping hand when needed.
There are two parts to the service: Derbyshire Connect takes people to do their shopping, banking and other similar things. The aCTive Travel part of the service helps people get to medical and hospital appointments. You can find the contact details of the providers covering your area on the Derbyshire County Council website
Gold card - anyone over 60 (depending on your date of birth) can have a Gold Card − the travel, discount and library card for Derbyshire residents. You can now apply for a card online. If you've already got a card, make sure you renew it.
b_line card - If you are a carer under 18 you may be interested in the b_line card which offers concessionary travel and discount for young people.
Carers Trust has a helpful guide on getting out and about and the schemes carers can access.
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