You are an informal carer if you regularly look after someone without payment who:

  • Is ill
  • is disabled or frail
  • has an addiction or mental health issues
  • cannot manage day to day activities such as washing, cooking, eating, cleaning or getting about without your help
  • needs emotional support or other help

The person you care for may be a relative or a friend and they may reside in another household but they have to live in Waltham Forest.

Practical support in Waltham Forest

Carers First provides services for unpaid carers on behalf of Waltham Forest Council.

Carers First provides a range of practical and emotional support, plus advice, information and guidance to carers. This includes access to peer support groups, other support sessions and training. They also provide advice on the issues you may be facing as a carer.

The Care Act

Since 1 April 2015 carers have had the same rights to an assessment and support as the people they look after.

To find out if you are eligible, visit Carers UK for a breakdown of the eligibility criteria.

You can also read the Care Act 2014 online.

Carer's assessment

The process of a carer’s assessment involves a discussion with the carer in which information is gathered to identify unmet eligible needs and also co-produce a support plan to record outcomes and how these can be best achieved.

This can take place over the 'phone, face to face, or via email. Some support services can be provided through an assessment of the person you care for.

The cared-for person does not need to have a package of support in place in order for you to request a carer’s assessment.

However, if the cared-for person needs a support package from a care agency, they will require an assessment of their needs under the Care Act 2014.

Through the assessment process, the needs and outcomes that matter to you will be identified. 

The plan will look at how these outcomes can be best achieved, to help you get the most out of your day-to-day activities.

If you would like to have a Carer’s Assessment, please contact Waltham Forest Adult Social Care.

Waltham Forest Adult Social Care

Carer's Allowance

Carer's Allowance is a government benefit paid weekly to people if they care for someone at least 35 hours a week and they get certain benefits.

You do not have to be related to, or live with, the person you care for.

You do not get paid extra if you care for more than one person.

If someone else also cares for the same person as you, only one of you can claim Carer’s Allowance.

You do not need a carer’s assessment from the Council to be eligible for Carer's Allowance.

Download our free support app for Waltham Forest carers

If you are you looking after somebody, Jointly is an app helps keep everyone in the loop.

Developed by Carers UK, Jointly is an innovative mobile and online app designed to support people looking after a loved one. Waltham Forest Council is offering Jointly for free to carers in our area.

To find out more and obtain your free promo code download a copy of the Jointly information leaflet (PDF) from this page.

Supporting unpaid carers: a free online resource for all carers

Supporting unpaid carers is a free online resource for all carers. It is aimed at people who provide unpaid care to family members, friends, neighbours, people in their communities or anyone who needs caring for.

Free to use, it provides links to relevant information, including benefits and rights, and how to support those with specific conditions.

Bitesize e-learning sessions include information on the stages of caring, and how to look after yourself as an unpaid carer. Specialist resources on topics such as infection prevention and end of life care require registration, but are also free to access.