The Adur Carers Project
The Adur Carers Project

This free course is available to start right now. Review the full course description and key learning outcomes and create an account and enrol if you want a free statement of participation.

Free course

The Adur Carers Project

2 The carers

Figure 2: The Adur Carers Mobile Information Project

Through Jonathan and Jane, we hear from three people in different caring relationships. At the time of the recording, in 2000, Julie, Les and Carol were involved in caring roles. Pat talks from the point of view of someone who used to be a carer.

All three were willing to be interviewed, in order to share their experiences, despite having to reorganise their daily routines and give up precious free time. The interviews took place at a local advice centre.

Julie is the mother of a disabled child. Although she gets a break during the day, she has to escort him to and from school on the bus. The local education authority has made this a condition of his using school transport. The two double journeys take up most of the day, and she has only a brief period between late morning and early afternoon to get all her jobs done.

Les looks after his adult son, who has severe mental health problems and never leaves the house. Although Les does not have to provide a high level of personal care, he cannot go out very much because of his son's disturbed behaviour. His wife can cope alone for short periods, but she worries if she is left alone with their son for long. An added pressure for Les is the stigma attached to mental distress. He believes his neighbours would react negatively, if they knew his son had schizophrenia, and we were only able to record this interview on condition that we used a pseudonym.

Carol cares for both her mother and her aunt. When she came in to speak to us, she brought with her a diary entry for a typical day (attached below). What is striking about Carol's diary is the physical labour of caring, the number of people coming and going in the course of a day, and the fact that personal care has to be fitted in alongside car repairs, housework, and other family commitments.

Have a look at Carol's diary [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .

Pat Amsell is a volunteer who helps with the liaison project's telephone support line, which is operated by people who all have first-hand experience of caring.

K202_1

Take your learning further

Making the decision to study can be a big step, which is why you'll want a trusted University. The Open University has over 40 years’ experience delivering flexible learning and 170,000 students are studying with us right now. Take a look at all Open University courses.

If you are new to university level study, find out more about the types of qualifications we offer, including our entry level Access courses and Certificates.

Not ready for University study then browse over 900 free courses on OpenLearn and sign up to our newsletter to hear about new free courses as they are released.

Every year, thousands of students decide to study with The Open University. With over 120 qualifications, we’ve got the right course for you.

Request an Open University prospectus