Monday, 25 August 2008

disgrantled carer

you may remember i wrote a few weeks back i was applying  to get away for a few days sometime. i wrote a long letter  to  my  carers assessment social  worker (casw in future,its bit of mouthfull ) asking if it was possible to get any  help towards a break,financial  help that is.when i had my assessment  earlier in year,which  as  my early  entries  told i had  waited  for,for  4  months,the  casw promised  me several things.  mum  would get a voluntary visitor,    that  took  3  months.        yes C  comes  now,and i am grateful to her.             but  it took ages  to get  set  up.        i was promised  help to fill in forms,    i had  a letter  from the person concerned,he was busy  but would be in touch.  never  heard a word.   as  i  already  have said  i  had a spell of self denial  and  never did anything  about  it  until the other  week.       and  that  was   because of my  MS nurse  giving  me  different  organisation  to go to.       never  heard a word  from  other.        i was promised  help from carers  organisations,and  yes  i am now  registered, never  had  to use  them yet         but  they are there.         and      carers  grant.      casw told me  there is a grant carers can apply for every year,up to £200     for  help   with things  like  breaks,doing  hobbies  etc.       i  asked  for  help  towards a new  bed for  mum  as hers  was  broken,and  it was making my  job  hard  to make  it.        i  got £150           nowhere  near  enough  for a new  bed.   so  i  repaired  her  old one,and  we  bought  a  nice   thick  new  mattress  for her  with  the  money.     cost  £170              but  mum is  comfortable.         now  she        casw        told  me  this  grant  is paid  every  year ,  just  apply,say what  you  want  the money  for,runs  from april  to april.    so  thats what  i had asked  for  my  break.   carers  grant  to enable  me to get away  for  3  days.          hadnt  heard a word  until wednesday.

i had gone to doctors,got  home,mum said         social services  rang,  will ring you later  this  afternoon.        never  did.        next  morning  i went  up shop to get  papers,came  home        they  rang  again  said  mum               will ring  you  lunch time.        never  did. finally  she rang me friday.     a  new social worker  i have  never  met  before,  asked  me how  things  were,   and  when did i want  to  go away?  promising  i thought.      mid october  i  said.       ok  she  said,i can arrange  cover for your mum,extra carers  to get  her  food etc.          blah,blah.        no word about  money.       then  she said,oh  i am reading  your  letter,   you wish  to know  if there is any  financial  help.well  there  is  this charity  you could apply  to,i  will send  details,       ermmmm    just   sec.i  said          i  applied  for  carers grant,         oh  she  said,you have  to  get  in touch  with  work and  pensions          carers  allowance  is nothing  to do   with  norfolk county council      now.................   whoah,   i  cant  GET  carers  allowance,  the  benefit  i am on  i cant  get  it.        i applied   for  carers  GRANT.         i  explained  it all to  her.         and  she had never heard of  it.         said        maybe  it was a one off?   no        i was told  every  year.            maybe  it  was  a  social  grant,they  have to be  repaid  but....................NO,ITS A CARERS  GRANT.       long  and  short,  i  had  a  small bit  of  paper  come, with  this charitys address on  and phone  number   to  apply  to see if i can get any help from them,   she  will look into  carers  grant,but  couldnt  find  anything  on her  computer  about  it.         goodbye  mr  lake.       

i went  on the website  for carers.        and  i cant  find  anything  about  the grant  either.   still got  the slip  that came  with the cheque,and  sent  it  to the social  worker,but it does  look like        thanks  to cuts  in social security  funding,    carers  grant  has  gone.          along  with any  hope i had  of getting  away.        i havent  got  money to  waste  on taking a  holiday.    i only  applied  because  i thought  the  grant  was available.     working  on  what you  never  have  you  never miss,i  guess  i am not  really  too surprised.          but  i  am  just  one  carer.       there  are  thousands  in  the  country.           and  for  some,    that  grant,   to  be able  to  go away  for  a  little  break          is   a  lifeline.           i  shall apply  to  the charity,  but        i  am unpaid,  i  get  little  help,        surely  more  could  be   done  to  help  the  helpers?   we  save this  country  tens of thousands  of pounds,by providing  care  that  otherwise  would  have to  be funded for.             a  caring  society??         take care all.        many,many  thanks  for all the lovely  comments and emails  i got  over  the  MS  entry.    mort


specialadyfink said...

So sorry they can't help you out.
Don't they know that you "NEED" to get away for your own sanilty. That you will do a much better job of care taking if you have a chance now and then to re-coup.
My best to you.
Your mum is so very fortunate to have you.
Cyber Hugs

jeanno43 said...

Oh Mort, I am so sorry about all this red tape and how people always seemed to be pushed from one department to another.
That is why many benefits go unclaimed not only for carers, the disabled but also pensioners.  The forms are too difficult to fill in, there are few in authority willing to help sort them out.  I agree with what you said about carers, the government would have a fit if suddenly every carer stopped and they had to provide the care and cover.  There are many children who care for parents as well.
Please contact that charity, that is what they are there for.  They may be able to give you the help that you need and also maybe more help you are unaware of.  They should also give you support.  Do not give up on that break away yet, it could still happen.

marainey1 said...

It is a thankless job for sure.  My sisters and I had the care of my parents before they passed away and the only help we could be assured of was what we could pay for.  Needless to say we did not pay .  One of my sisters does not work and she had the brunt of the care as the other 2 of us have to work out side the home. It often sounds like there is alot of help out there but when it comes down to it, it is very meager.  Take care and try to count your blessings and not your woes which are many and warrented.  'On Ya'-ma

jhorky said...

Ah Mort, being a carer really is a tough job and for us that had no fAMILY FOR carer, It was extremely hard to get areliable caRER.  Money for vacatiom wouild never happen here in US.  Lucy

funnyface0s0 said...

Hi Mort ..... well you could certainly come to me for a few days, but i suspect you could not afford the train fare, it cost me £150 to go to Yorkshire !  Please know you are welcome at any time :o)
Its so annoying to think that Carers do not receive the support they need.   Come on Great Britain show us exactly what is GREAT about this country.
Luv Jaynee X

jeadie05 said...

I can imagine how very frustrating this must be for you Mort ,you do your job day in and day out because you want your Mum to have the best care and this is how you are treated ,its all wrong Jan xx

lanurseprn said...

Getting any help here is like pulling teeth. I was caring for my Mom when she was sick, and I had to pay for someone to come sit with my Mom. At the time, in 1994 it was $15/hour. So it cost LOTS to do ANYTHING 'cause I couldn't leave her alone. It's awful! Needless to say, I didn't go anywhere that I did not HAVE to!
I'm so sorry about this. I hope you do get some financial help to get some respite. I know you need it.
Hugs and love, Pam

sybilsybil45 said...

OHHHHHHHHHH  Mort,  Caring....what may well ask....where is it when we need it...Governments.... of all colours.....are expecting charities to take on more and more responsibility for doing what really should be government funded.  I do not know where it will all end.  Keep smiling x   Love Sybil  xx

mjgm1954 said...

hey Mort!   You deserve a vacation poor dear. i do agree that governments dont do enough. here in America grandparents are raising their grandchildren for parents who are on drugs or in jail and they get little help. Now if a stanger does the same job , they get paid a salary.
well you have a lovely garden . try not to be upset  that does no good. enjoy the warm weather and lovely garden before it turns cold.
i sat on my porch enjoying the wind and rain and listen to my windchimes while hurricane faye threatend the coastline.  Thats as close as I will get to a vacation lol, hugs and best wishes, jun

pharmolo said...

And there are thousands like you, trying to get what you are entitled to, but it's like getting water out of a stone. Disgraceful. Keep beavering away at them.

helmswondermom said...

That is a real shame.  You do deserve a break, and I hope that somehow you can get one.

jjdolfin9 said...

I'm so sorry Mort.  If I were a rich lady I would send you what you need.  Terrible that it is so difficult to get any help.  Will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
Hugs, Joyce

luvrte66 said...

Mort, I'm so sorry that they weren't able to come through for you with the grant. So many services have been cut here in the states, and it sounds like the same thing is happening there. I hope something will work out so that you can get your certainly deserve it.

All my best,

linnpooh said...

{{{Mort}}} I'm so sorry this is happening to you, and I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

Pooh Hugs,

jacsher said...

Hey Mort.  I guess we all should not be surprised to find that beauracies are the same every where.  
You get tired being referred to someone else,  (they take care of that. )
Let me get back to you.
I will ring  you right back!

YOu could probably make a list fot he same canned answers.  BUT then once in awhile you find the person who really cares, and it makes all the difference.

Hope today is good and tomorrow is better.


chefkelly25 said...

Hi Mort,
Sorry things are not panning out.  When you have a good day you must make a pain in the tush of yourself with these organizations.  You may finally get the right answer.  It has taken me three trips to the auto dealer, 4 calls to cheverolet, but finally got brakes fixed at no charge.  There are programs out there, but you have to be persistent and ask a hundred questions and most of all have lots of patience.  Same stuff here.  Glad your mom is resting better, by the way I am gonna get the chain saw out soon and whack off that weeping cherry top.  Kelly

naperdillygirl said...

Hiya Mort, so sorry for all the "mess".  Thanks for your little story on my journal.  I had heard that story before, but it had changed a bit, I hadn't heard that the fingers would be lost, only shown as they went to pull the bow.  I love little "histories" like that.  Thanks again, and thanks for commenting recently!  Sue

rdautumnsage said...

I'm sorry to hear about this Mort. I know you were looking forward to getting away for a few days. Hopefully something will fall into your lap for you to be able to get away. (Hugs)Indigo

stetsonsfyre said...

Government entities absolutely suck at times :(  I had a stint back in 2001 after 9-11 happened where the economy was so very bad here and many people lost their jobs where I had to rely on the government for a short period of time for help... never have had to do so before, yet, from the paperwork, the grilling interviews, being a citizen of this country (born here) it was like pulling teeth!  now, if I had been a illegal immigrant, a woman with oodles of kids but no husband (we have those here where they just have baby after baby in order to STAY on welfare and not work) I would have had NO problem, but being a "single, white, somewhat educated female, has always paid her taxes, never been on welfare before" I had to prostrate myself to get it. Ticked me off... I agree with there should be some kind of monetary back up for caregivers, that is damned hard and stressful work! not to mention with your M.S.  Stress does not help your situation at all.  Will be lighting candles for you hon.  Blessings** Teresa

luvrte66 said...

Dear Mort, thank you so much for including me as one of your Guest Editor picks! It is much appreciated, my friend. I'll look forward to checking out the journals that I don't currently read!

Love, Beth

mereel2005 said...

Mazol Tov for being chosen as guest editor. Well done.

jeanno43 said...

Congratulations on being Guest Editor Mort, you did a great job and thank you for giving my journal a mention, it was so nice of you.  I am proud to call you friend.

madcobug said...

Congratulations for being picked for Editor's Choice. I have just read a couple of your entry's. My prayers are with you and your Mum. Helen