The Carers’ Support Centre was established in 1989 as a 3 year project based with Glanford Council for Voluntary Service, to research into Carers needs and then established services for Carers. The first Carer Group started in Barton upon Humber in October 1989 quickly followed by one in Brigg.
By 1992 the Carers’ Support Centre had developed 4 weekly Carer Groups with both Bottesford and Winterton being established that year. It was providing information, advocacy and listening ear service to over 40 new Carers every month, advising Carers on welfare rights and assisting them to claim benefits.
A small home care sitting service was developed where ‘sitters’ were provided to enable Carers to attend a Carer Group knowing that someone was looking after the person they cared for. The Centre was also obtaining grants for individual Carers to have much needed breaks and to purchase essential pieces of equipment.
In 1993 the Carers’ Support Centre became an independent charity with a management committee. The committee was largely made up of Carers, and this is still the case today.
In 1996 the Carers’ Support Centre expanded all of its services and support to Carers into Scunthorpe with two new Carer Groups (Lilacs & Parkwood) being developed. It was by now also being widely used by Local Authority and Health Authorities in consultation exercises with Carers.
In 1997/98 a 3 year lottery grant enabled the Carers’ Support Centre to provide services to hidden Carers in rural areas, the Crosby Carer Group was established and the Home Care Service expanded and developed with the setting up of the first ever contract to provide home care to Social Services clients. In 1999 the services expanded to the Isle of Axholme and a Carer Group started in Epworth.
In December 1999 a successful lottery application enabled the Carers’ Support Centre to buy 11 Redcombe Lane, Brigg and the building was adapted during 2000. It was opened in September 2000 and named Jessie Wilcox House after a Carer and friend of the Carers’ Support Centre.
In 2001 a Lifelong Learning Project was developed giving Carers financial support and encouragement to undertake a new learning experience, hobby or interest or restart an interest that had lapsed due to caring role.
2003 saw the development of the Carers’ Small Grant, a pot of money made available to Carer Groups to enable them to enjoy activities, days out and learning experiences as a group whilst having a break from their caring role. It also saw the start of our Parent Carer Support Group. 2003 also saw the first stages of the development of the Carer’s Needs Assessment. The Carers’ Support Centre employed a member of staff to research the needs and to develop the process and in 2005 we started to undertake Carers Assessments.
In 2005 a new computerised information service to Carers was developed and a dedicated Information Worker was employed. In this year, a volunteers coordinator was employed to recruit volunteers to provide befrienders to Carers and Ex-Carers who are experiencing a difficult time.
In 2010 the building at 11 Redcombe Lane doubled in size thanks to support from the Northern Lincolnshire Rural Local Action Group and LEADER, to enable the charity to support more Carers. The building extension was officially opened by Princess Anne, Patron of the Carers Trust (previously Princess Royal Trust for Carers) in 2011.
In 2014 we started supporting Carers in North East Lincolnshire, making the Carers’ Support Centre a Northern Lincolnshire charity, and adding a potential 16,000 more Carers to the population of people the Carers’ Support Centre can support. At this time, we started referring to the Carers’ Support Centre as the Carers’ Support Service, placing the emphasis on the services and support we provide, in and across all of the communities in North and North East Lincolnshire.
Today we actively support over 5000 Carers. We register over 60 Carers every month. We provide over 50,000 hours of support every year via paid staff and volunteers. We work with more than 40 volunteers who provide support in counselling and befriending services. Volunteers also help facilitate groups, and provide support to transport Carers to vital groups and other sources of support.