A Routemaster roadshow for Hackney carers

CARERS in Hackney got on board with services designed for them during Carers Week (8-14 June) thanks to a Routemaster bus roadshow around the borough.

Jules Pipe, elected Mayor of Hackney, and Cllr Nargis Khan, Cabinet Member for Community Services,and senior managers met with some of the borough s carers and gave their backing before the roadshow set off from Hackney Town Hall on 11 June, stopping at Dalston s Kingsland Shopping Centre, and then Morrison’s supermarket, Stamford Hill, in the afternoon.

The roadshow events were busy and well attended, with staff from the council voluntary and health sectors identifying forty five new carers, and informing them of services available specifically for carers from Hackney Council and partner organisations.

Carers are people who provide unpaid care by looking after an ill, frail or disabled family member, friend or partner. The theme of this year’s national Carers Week highlighted their role as the country’s ‘secret service’, in providing a vital but often overlooked service to those around them.

Cllr Nargis Khan, Cabinet Member for Community Services, said: “Hackney is committed to providing high quality, improved, and innovative services for carers, and to recognising the central role they have in the lives of many of the borough’s residents.”

A host of other events and activities also took place in Hackney for national Carers Week 2009, including:

• information stalls in key reception areas – Homerton Hospital, GP surgeries, libraries, social services offices

• an afternoon High Tea event on 10 June at City and Hackney Carers Centre

• a dance event for carers on 12 June organised by City and Hackney Mind

• men’s and women’s trips to Spa London

• a tour and introduction to library services for carers on 9 June

• a tour of Hackney Museum on 10 June

• a noon-7pm health and wellbeing event on 9 June at City Edge, 125-127 Mare Street, featuring health checks, massage, music, dance, food and refreshments, organised by East London NHS Foundation Trust.

Carers in the borough will also soon be receiving survey forms from the Council and the government s Department of Health, to be completed and returned to help improve support and services available.

Hackney Council provides a range of support services for carers, including a free two-day retreat; free training courses; support accessing work and education opportunities; an emergency home respite service; and the Carers Card, offering concessionary rates of up to 50 per cent at Council leisure centres and discounts at local shops.

For more information, and to apply for the Carers Card, contact Hackney’s Carers Helpline on: 020 8356 5054, e-mail: or visit