We have dedicated over 25 years to supporting and improving the lives of carers. From a small locally funded project to an established charity, The Carers’ Centre has come a long way.
We have stayed true to our roots and continue to put carers at the heart of our work. We strive to ensure that they are recognised, valued, and supported not only by us but by the general public.
We start our history with a small, locally funded project led by The Volunteer Bureau. The project’s aim was to support unpaid carers in the area of Wansdyke (now North East Somerset).
Within two years The Volunteer Bureau transformed in to The Care Network, where a further 8 staff members were employed at our base in Radstock. Colleagues, Craig Jolly and Allan Trinder worked together to form the first Carers Strategy.
We became a member of the Princess Royal Trust for Carers (now known as The Carers Trust) and we were commissioned by Bath and North East Somerset Council to provide vital carer support services in the area.
We were renamed as Bath and North East Somerset Carers’ Centre.
After successfully gaining various contracts The Carers’ Centre were supporting more than 3,000 carers across Bath and North East Somerset.
We launched a fantastic young carer’s service to support 600 children that were under 18 years old and caring for a loved one.
We also secured a £300,000 grant from The National Lottery to expand our respite services. This meant more than 500 carers could take a meaningful break from their caring role each year.
As the number of unpaid carers continued to increase, so did the demand for support. We expanded to a second base in Bath and our dedicated team doubled in size.
We also received a very special donation from the BBC One Show – our beautiful garden! Over thirty volunteers helped install the garden across five days – carers, staff, trustees, local residents and local business employees worked together to transform the outdoor space, for carers to enjoy in the years to come.
Carers told us that they wanted a space to call their own. We therefore secured a crucial social investment loan from St John’s Foundation to support the purchase of our lovely premises based in Bath, which we had previously rented, along with money raised by carers and the general public towards our Woodlands Appeal.
We were awarded a PQASSO level 3 for our performance, which was the highest quality mark a charity could receive.
We provided a vital service to carers experiencing isolation and loneliness by expanding our neighbourhood Carer Cafés.
We launched our Freephone Support Line to provide essential one to one support, information and advice to those in need.
A supportive network is key to ensuring a carer does not reach breaking point. We secured £415,000 in funding to explore ways people can better support carers. Over the next few years we will be working closely with the various groups of people in a carer's life, from health professionals to friends and family. Watch this space for news and resources!