Dear friends,

Seeing as this is my first Christmas at the Centre, I thought I would just put together a quick note wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. I hope you’re all having a great time, enjoying good food and celebrating the end of 2017 well.

We’ve had a cracking year at the Carers Centre, with major changes taking place and a veritable horde of new staff joining. Scott, our new Volunteer Co-ordinator joined us in June, Claire joined our Carers Advisor Team in May, and Julie started with us in July. More recently, we said a fond farewell to Hilary Hull and Ron Davenport, and welcomed Noshee as our BME Carer Engagement worker and Adam as our new Communications worker.

Our Carers Café continues to be a hit, running on the second Friday of every month, at Central United Reformed church. Carers come from all over the city for tea and cake and merriment. They enjoy meeting up with old and new friends from around the city.

One of the highlights of the year was Carers Week. Between 12th and 18th June, we ran a series of events and workshops to support carers and spread awareness of the issues they face. We had a busking day on the Moor – where our Carers and Council choir and other talents friends performed – which was very well received, joined in with the Sheffield Young Carers drumming workshop, and our Annual Caring for Carers awards were presented by the Lord Mayor at the Town Hall.

We would also like to welcome all our new volunteers who have joined us this year. Our volunteers are an integral part of the services we provide and we are very lucky to have such dedicated and committed group of people. Thank you so much for everything you do for us!

Four editions of our Newsletter were delivered to over 8000 carers! We value feedback about this greatly, and are always pleased to hear stories of how the Newsletter has helped you or what you found really interesting.

We have continued with our support services and the Carer Advisor Team have done fantastic work this year. I’m blown away by how many people they are able to help, and they are excellent at finding creative solutions to problems that people bring to them. The Carers Needs Assessments have also been a substantial development in how we can help carers access extra support, along with the Time for Break service and the ongoing monthly Carers Cafe.

We look forward to working with you all again in the New Year, and hope that our work continues to make a difference in thousands of carers lives. Thank you for your ongoing support, kindness and commitment, it truly is exceptional.

Merry Christmas,

Pauline Kimantas and the team at the Sheffield Carers Centre