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Booklet's advice on benefits and rights for carers

Every year around 70,000 people in Northern Ireland become carers - they begin to look after a loved one who is frail, ill or disabled.

Because they are unpaid, Northern Ireland's 214,000 carers save the economy at least £4.4bn each year.

At the same time they are missing out on state support of more than £4m in unclaimed benefits.

It's not all about benefits. Carers can end up exhausted and isolated if they don't get the help they need.

Often people who care for others don't even think of themselves as "carers" - caring may happen gradually, or we see it as part of normal family life. Many are unaware of benefits and services that can help. This is where Carers NI can help.

Our free Looking After Someone booklet is an essential guide to carers' rights and benefits.

You can also download the booklet and find useful information about training and support for carers on our website, www.carersni.org.

We also offer a confidential and independent advice service for carers throughout Northern Ireland who need more detailed one-to-one advice on benefits and caring.

Call us any weekday, tel: 028 9043 9843 or email advice@carersni.org for more information and to obtain a copy of our booklet.

HELEN FERGUSON

Director, Carers Northern Ireland

Belfast Telegraph

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