Carers Singing Group joined together to sing Christmas Songs at the Carers Support Centre.
Carers joined together to share festive cheer and hear Christmas songs sung by their very own Carers Singing Group at the Carers Support Centre, central Croydon, with one song particularly resonating with the audience.
A variety of Christmas songs were sung by the Group during a stunning performance on Wednesday 16 December to a willing audience of carers who enthusiastically joined in the singing and to one song in particular that had been specially written by a volunteer at the Centre.
David Sutch (below image) had adapted the song lyrics to ‘Right Said Fred’ (see below), after volunteering at the Centre for more than two years and seeing the huge difference it made not only to his life, but also to the lives of hundreds of other carers who visit the George Street Centre each month.
David’s role as a volunteer sees him warmly welcoming regular and new visitors to the Centre’s Carers Café, which saw 3,100 attendees in 2015, and also undertaking a variety of administration roles.
He said: “I re-wrote the song lyrics because the Carers Support Centre is one of the biggest stokes of luck I’ve ever had and it has transformed my life.
“As a carer you can feel you are struggling on your own and no one understands what it’s like. There is such a look of relief on people’s faces when they visit the Carers Café and see there is someone who really does understands what it’s like.
“I would strongly encourage more of Croydon’s carers to experience all that is on offer at the Centre for themselves.”
Katie Rose, Croydon based Musician and Vocal Coach, who runs the bi-weekly Carers Singing Group sessions, gave praise to carers at the event, saying: “They are the unsung heroines and heroes of Croydon’s community who provide great care for their loved ones.”
The Centre, which opened in September 2013, is a lifeline for thousands of carers in Croydon and is going from strength to strength.
25,000 carers visited the Centre in 2015 to get information and advice in their caring role and more than 860 carers attended information and training sessions covering Moving and Handling People, The Impact of Caring of Relationships and Power of Attorney: Your Questions Answered, to name a few.
One carer who attended the Supporting Siblings session, said: “Amazing day, very emotional for me, but has helped me understand that I am not alone and that the feelings are normal.”
As well as asking for support with specific issues, carers can also request a Carers Assessment and can book appointments at specialist advice surgeries covering employment, housing, benefits and legal advice.
Health, wellbeing and social activities are also popular and the Centre now offers a monthly Knit and Natter session, a Ladies Who Lunch Group, and a Gentleman’s Lunch Club as well as monthly massage sessions and the bi-weekly Carers Singing Group – all of which are free for carers to attend.
The Alzheimer’s Society provides a monthly café session for carers on all aspects of dementia and the Family Fund offers sessions to carers of severely disabled children on how they can receive grants.
The Centre is located at 24 George Street, open Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm and jointly funded by The Whitgift Foundation and Croydon Council and run by the Foundation’s Carers Information Service.
The Carers Café runs every weekday morning at 10.30am - 12.30pm with free drinks, refreshments, books, magazines and wi-fi. The Centre will be closed from Christmas Eve and re-open on Monday 4 January 2016.
An article on the recent activities also appeared in the Croydon Advertiser.
For further information, please visit our Carer Services page.
David’s song - an adaptation of Right Said Fred
Right!” said Fred
“I’ve become a carer,
As a carer, I shall soon excel.”
He was dreaming
And felt like screaming,
He was getting nowhere,
He, had a cup of tea.
Fred looked around and he said, “Now Mum,
I’ve been round Croydon moping,
But I’m really hoping
That this place I’ve found
Is gonna do us proud.”
“Right!” said Fred,
I’m taking you to George Street
And we’ll chat to the folks at 24.
Info’s free there
Can even have a tea there.
Mum we’re getting somewhere.”
Fred and Mum
Had a lovely cup of tea,
And then, went home.
“Fancy that Mum; the Carers Support Centre!
Just as I felt I was on me own!
What a lovely bunch of people.
Bloke in the café was a bit of a bore. We’ll
avoid Tuesdays in future, eh Mum?
I like this book he’s given me though. I’ll
have time to read it now, with all the help
they’ve arranged for us……..”