Croydon Council and Whitgift Foundation open new centre to support the borough’s 34,000 carers.
The new Carers Support Centre, in partnership between Croydon Council and The Whitgift Foundation, will open its doors to the public for the first time on Monday 23 September.
Carers will be able to drop in Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm, to find information and advice to help them in their caring role or to meet other carers.
The new Centre is located at 24 George Street and will offer local and national information relevant to carers of all ages, as well as a diverse range of free services, activities and training sessions.
It aims to provide easier access to support and information for carers on a variety of issues affecting them such as housing, benefits, debt and employment issues, as well as leisure, social and respite activities.
A complete refurbishment has taken place at 24 George Street with a reception area, meeting rooms and a carers' cafe available to provide space for training sessions, specialist advocacy, individual and group emotional support and surgeries provided by the NHS and Croydon Council services.
In the upper floors of the building there is office space for voluntary organisations who will work in collaboration with each other as part of a wider Carers Support Network. They include: the Carers’ Information Service, Young Carers Project, Rethink, Croydon Neighbourhood Care, Crossroads Care South Thames, Horizon Care and Welfare Association, ‘Off The Record’ – Youth Counselling Croydon, Parents in Partnership and Croydon Mencap.
There is also a range of meeting rooms available for voluntary organisations to hire from just £10 an hour. To find out more, contact Alison Brewster on 020 8649 6290 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Croydon Council’s cabinet member for adult services and health, Councillor Margaret Mead, said: “Our carers do invaluable work, looking after loved ones in often challenging circumstances. Without them, our health services simply would not be able to cope. We want to recognise and support the huge job they do here in Croydon. This fantastic new centre will be a one-stop shop for carers, and provide everything they need under one roof.”
Martin Corney, Chief Executive, The Whitgift Foundation, said: "We are delighted that the new Carers Support Centre will very shortly be opening its doors to the public and we welcome all carers in the borough to drop in and find information and support relevant to their lives. I would particularly like to thank all of the organisations involved, particularly the Carers’ Information Service, in getting the new facility up and running. Care in the local community is at the heart of The Whitgift Foundation's 400 year old mission and we hope the Carers Support Centre will make a real difference to thousands of carers no matter how big or small."
Helen Thompson, Manager, Carers’ Information Service, said: “The Carer’s Support Centre will make it much easier for carers to access the support and advice they need to maintain their own health and wellbeing, as well as find the right service at the right time for the situation they are dealing with. By bringing the wealth of expertise available in the borough’s support services into one place, carers will know exactly where they can turn and we can help them to choose the specialist support that best fits their needs. We are delighted that this fantastic facility will soon be open and look forward to welcoming carers across the borough to the new Centre.”