Community Correspondent: Thamanna Trishna on Association of Blind Asians​​' Carers Support Group


By Thamanna Trishna, Association of Blind Asians

Association of Blind Asians have secured some funding, through Time to shine, to help and support carers. We've been working with the community since 1989. Association of Blind Asians provide support to the South Asian community living in all parts of Leeds. We work with all age groups, from 18 upwards, who have any sort of visual impairments. Majority of our clients are age 50 and above. We work closely with the service users and their families and support them with all their health and social care needs. We run two luncheon clubs, on a weekly basis, for older people where they come to meet other service users and have lunch.

The carer’s course is designed to give participants the confidence for them to become a better carer. The course will help them manage their mental, physical, and emotional well-being as well as supporting them with guidance of their rights as a carer. Caring can be a challenging at times on individuals, if they've never done this before, and having the right support and guidance is vital.

ABA works with a variety of partners and has an effective and established network. We'll invite partner organisations to work with us to design and deliver relevant modules. We'll be covering some of the main and important topics that carers feel that they need more help and support with or would like more information on. Carers will gain more knowledge and information of accessing relevant services that are available for carers.

We'll cover new topics every week; some of the topics we've chosen are relevant to caring roles. Each session will last about three hours. We've invited external organisations such as Carers Leeds, Guide Dogs, Rehabilitation Officer and CAB to deliver sessions each week.

The course will help carers to build confidence and be confident in their role as a carer. We'll work in small groups so that carers feel included and heard. The course will offer an opportunity for carers to meet new people and make new friends. We have bilingual staff who can interpret for carers who have limited English; we can interpret in most south Asian languages. A course module handbook has been developed in partnership with external organisations.

Carers face many difficulties living their day-to-day life leaving them feeling lonely and isolated. The group will give them the opportunity to meet other carers who are in the same situation as them and share each other’s ideas and inspiration. It will also give them a little break from their usual caring routine. They will be able to bring the person they are caring for along with them if they don’t have any alternative caring arrangements in place.

This course is open to all carers living in Leeds. We thank Frederick Hurdle Day Centre for supporting us delivering this course.

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