Caring communities offered a vital helping hand

Date published: 13 May 2020

Oldham carers have been given a helping hand during the Coronavirus crisis.

Services run by MioCare Group, one of Oldham Council’s key partners, have adapted to help out those selfless people who dedicate their lives to helping others.

One such example is the Shared Lives service.

The Shared Lives team in Oldham are very aware of the strain and difficulties that the Coronavirus outbreak has placed upon communities – specifically ‘caring’ communities. 

In response to this, they want to ensure that everything possible is being done to support carers who have been isolated as a result of the pandemic.

Shared Lives Oldham has been able utilise its existing links within another of the MioCare Group’s services – the Wellbeing Service – to set up an improvised, support network for the most vulnerable carers. 

Managers and staff from these two teams have been visiting homes to help do a little shopping and deliver Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and medication.

They’ve also provided opportunities for carers to take time out from their placement to go for a walk, offering a welcome break for both service users and carers alike.

In some cases the support has merely been popping round for chat over the fence to break the monotony and to simply let people know that they’d not been forgotten.

It’s clear from the response they’ve had that this has meant so much people and they’ve really appreciate the efforts to keep in touch.

Kate Morgan, Oldham Shared Lives Scheme manager, said: “All this has given carers a sense of belonging to the wider ‘caring’ community while at the same time ensuring that they have been able to maintain their support and moral through these very difficult and stressful times.

The MioCare Group’s Managing Director Karl Dean said of the work: “Our mission here is ‘supporting people to get the most out of life’ and sometimes, especially at the moment, that means being flexible, adaptable and thoughtful in how we work.

"Our Shared Lives and Wellbeing Service staff have kept the people they support and serve at the forefront of their mind and it has really bound the community together.

"We’ll keep their example in mind as we continue onwards.”

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