National Carers’ Week 2024: Acknowledging the Silent Workforce

National Carers’ Week 2024: Acknowledging the Silent Workforce

National Carers’ Week 2024: Acknowledging the Silent Workforce

11th June 2024

As National Carers’ Week 2024 unfolds, it is crucial to shine a light on the unsung heroes who balance professional and personal responsibilities with immense dedication. This year’s theme, “Recognising and Supporting Carers in the Community,” underscores the importance of acknowledging and assisting those who care for others, often at great personal sacrifice. 

Claire Rogers, Managing Director of Progress, highlights the challenges carers face daily. In her recent video message, Claire shared her insights and firsthand experiences, emphasising the increased pressures on carers, particularly post-COVID-19. 

“A lot of us these days have got additional responsibilities outside of work. And after COVID, certainly there are more people that are needing support, whether you have children, whether you have relatives, close family members that are needing support, and that makes work harder,” Claire said, reflecting on the growing demands placed on carers. 

National Carers’ Week, organised by Carers UK, aims to raise awareness of the vital role carers play and the challenges they encounter. According to Carers UK, around one in nine people now have caring responsibilities, with one in six having to give up their jobs to care for loved ones. This statistic is particularly poignant in the social care sector, where professionals are disproportionately affected. 

Claire acknowledges this disparity, stating, “When we work in social care, we are disproportionately affected. I know certainly from my own experience because I was the carer in the family I was called upon when a family member needed that support. It could make it harder, when you’re doing that every day, and having that emotional connection to somebody just adds another layer of complexity onto caring for the person.” 

Progress, under Claire’s leadership, is committed to offering the flexibility needed to accommodate its team members that are also carers. “We recognise that we’ve got to be flexible in our work. Social care is a 24/7 industry. It is one where we can be flexible, we can offer alternatives, and that is what we are trying to do here at Progress — make sure that people can have a job that bends and flexes to life,” she said. 

Claire also stressed the importance of open communication between employers and employees to ensure that carers feel supported. “A conversation actually is really important, being open and honest and transparent about what’s going on, so that we can support you. It is life. And we want to be there and help you to progress and develop and not have to put your life on hold,” she explained. 

Carers UK encourages communities, employers, and policymakers to recognise the invaluable contributions of carers. During National Carers’ Week, various events and activities are organised to celebrate carers, provide them with support, and raise awareness about the issues they face. 

As we observe National Carers’ Week 2024, let us all take a moment to appreciate the dedication and resilience of carers who provide care and support selflessly. Their efforts ensure that vulnerable individuals receive the care they need while often juggling their own personal and professional lives. 

For more information about National Carers’ Week and how you can support carers in your community, visit Carers UK’s website. 

If you are inspired by the work that carers do and are interested in joining a supportive and flexible workplace, we invite you to explore the career opportunities available at Progress. Visit Progress Careers to find out more about how you can contribute to making a difference in the lives of those who need it most.