"Having been a carer myself for many years, I understand that it can be a very isolating journey. This group is the best thing that I have done, and it is so great to be able to support others with the information and guidance. We are all going through the same journey in different stages, so sharing experiences is helpful.
As a carer you can say how you feel to another carer, who will fully understand the challenges we face and will not judge us, family and friends would find it hard to believe what we go through.
Letting people know that they are not alone is key, and encouraging more connections to be made throughout the community of carers is so important. I am pleased Prama has helped me to be able to be able to offer carers the support they deserve and some fun in their lives.” – Janet Capp, Group Leader.
Stress Busters Carers Group, Venue 1
St Marys Church, Church Road, Ferndown BH22 9EU
Every fourth Tuesday of each month
14.00 pm – 15.30 pm
Stress Busters was initially made up of a few carers stepping out of the PramaLife Memory Lane Group, whilst their partners would be in safe hands with the Group Leader and Volunteers. Giving the carers an opportunity to have an hour to themselves. Naturally, a few individuals came together for the hour, getting to know one another and discussing their situations as carers.
The meetings evolved overtime, due to Janet organising a monthly group meeting in a private venue at The Beacon, called The Stress Busters. Where carers are welcomed with open arms to come along to listen, talk, empathise, discuss challenges or issues they may be facing, or simply just to have a safe space to relax for the hour.
On Tuesday 23rd January, Janet Capp, Leader of Stress Busters Group, arranged a talk by Live Well Dorset. Rosie spoke to the Stress Busters Group regarding the services and support offered from Live Well Dorset and group members were able to voice their questions. Janet has arranged for a number of organisations visit the group, allowi them to gain useful information about local support services.
What impact has Stress Busters had on the community of Carers?
Colin – Cares for his Wife, Anne
I care for my wife, Anne, she is in the early stages of dementia. We have been coming every week for the past 6 months to the Memory Lane Groups and once a month Janet organises a talk for Stress Busters that I attend. It is nice to see more men attending the group as I am usually the only one. I think Stress Busters is brilliant, it’s so good to learn and get more information from other people that are further down the line, I feel more prepared for what is to come. I feel more confident facing issues now instead of running from them. Before attending Stress Busters, I didn’t know I was able to apply for Attendance Allowance, which is for single carers.
Jan – Caring for her Husband, Brian
I began attending the Memory Lane Group on a temporary basis with my husband Brian, we have been signed up on a permanent basis with Memory Lane Group for three weeks now. Two months ago, I was told about Stress Busters. I get on really well with Vivian (another carer that attends the Stress Busters Group) and she helps me as she is in the same position with her husband. I tell her my challenges and she is able to relate to it, making me feel normal. I feel comfortable being here and Brian loves the Memory Lane Groups and looks forward to it each week.
Tanya – Caring for her Mum
My mum started attending to the Memory Lane Groups, the PramaLife staff and volunteers are always on hand to offer support, whenever they can help you, they will. Usually, my mum doesn’t like new situations, but she took to the Memory Lane Group so well and fitted right in. I joined the Stress Busters group not so long ago, and although I found the idea of going into a new group alone daunting, I received a very comfortable greeting from Janet and the group. Throughout the meeting I could feel a strong sense of compassion from everyone, it was overwhelming!
There was a lot of comfort being able to share stories without judgement. There was information shared with us, that you wouldn’t usually be able to get a hold of easily, it has helped so much on this journey with my mum having memory loss and other challenges - you are thrown into a world of chaos compared to your normal everyday life, and it is difficult to adjust to. You have to take it day by day, and it is helpful to know there are others going through similar situations. From my point of view, it was 2 hours for me to be able to sit there and unwind around people in a similar situation, in a non-threatening environment. Janet does an amazing job supporting all of us, she will email and call and help you with anything you need, even with her own situation continuing, she is able to find time to support everyone from the group.
If you or someone you know is struggling with their caring responsibilities or someone who would benefit attend the Stress Busters Carers Group, please contact Janet on 01202 875495
Prama also offers specific services, tailored to Carers, to find out how we can help you as a carer, please call the team on 01202 207329 to talk through your situation. All calls are treated confidentially, and if we aren’t the right solution for you, we will try our best to signpost you to other support or help.
"My befriender helps me to feel more normal, especially when I know I can share my caring role with her because she has experience caring for her own mum who has Alzheimer’s. Talking to someone else makes me feel that I am in not in it alone."
FOCUS - Friends Offering People who are Cared-for, living in the BCP area, a level of Understanding and Support.
Befriending - FOCUS provides you, as a carer, the opportunity to talk and focus on you. Our Befriending volunteers are recruited for their listening and communication skills. We can match you up with a fully trained volunteer befriender with similar interests to chat with on a regular basis on the phone or face to face, offering friendship and a sounding board.
Mentoring - If you are new to caring or your circumstances are changing, we can also support you with a volunteer mentor, who are existing or former carers. They can offer you guidance, provide you with useful information and advice or their personal experience for your future caring role.
For more information about Carers Support Services in East Dorset, please contact Carol, PramaLife East Dorset Manager on 07736 133445 or email@example.com
FOCUS Carer Support Scheme https://www.pramalife.org/focus-support-scheme
Support for Carers https://www.pramalife.org/support-for-carers