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Spare a thought for Ulster's carers

Most of us are looking forward to taking time off work and relaxing this festive season, but for the UK's six million carers, Christmas will be hard, unrelenting work, just as it has been all year long.

One-in-eight of us cares for a disabled or older spouse or family member and this number is rising rapidly.

Carers provide round-the-clock care for their loved-ones, often without any kind of break, with very little support and hardly any recognition of their plight.

This Friday (December 3) is Carers' Rights Day and I would like to ask your readers to spare a thought for the invisible army of carers in Northern Ireland.

Vitalise is a charity providing desperately-needed respite breaks for disabled people and carers. Just one week a year really can make the difference between coping and despair. I would ask your readers to remember that carers need breaks just as much as the people for whom they care.

If you would like to make a donation, please call 0845 345 1972.

COLIN BROOK

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From Belfast Telegraph