£5m Fund to Improve Support for England’s Unpaid Carers Opening Soon

A multi-million fund investing in new projects to improve carers’ wellbeing is soon to open to applications.

Provided by the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), the Carers Innovation Fund will invest in innovative ways of supporting unpaid carers, outside of mainstream health and care services.

The Fund aims to support accessible, carer-friendly communities and public services and also seeks to provide evidence on effective interventions to support carers.

The funding will be used to improve support across England and help build more carer-friendly communities. Projects will be expected to show a positive effect on:

  • carers’ health and wellbeing;
  • carers’ ability to manage work alongside caring responsibilities;
  • carers’ ability to take a break from their caring role;
  • reducing loneliness and social isolation.

Applicants will need to demonstrate that their idea is a fresh approach that is better than existing provision, will benefit the local community and can be expanded and replicated.

The total budget of the programme is £5 million. Organisations are invited to bid for up to £500,000.

Applications will be sought from organisations in England, from a mix of sectors. The voluntary sector, charities, small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and commercial organisations can all bid for funding to prove their concept, with the aim of securing longer term funding from other sources.

Minister for Care, Caroline Dinenage, said:

“This £5 million investment will help build our understanding of the kinds of support that work for carers, outside of traditional healthcare services.

“From cafes that bring carers together, to innovative forms of technology that help carers enjoy time off, I want to see a range of exciting projects boosted and their benefits unlocked.”

Stage one applications, via expression of interest, are expected to open before the end of June 2019.

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