How DAISI Assists Carers
DAISI recognises the crucial role carers play in the lives of those they care for and in sustaining Australia’s current system of community-based person-centred care. A carer may be a partner, relative, friend or neighbour. Care can be part-time or full-time, over a short period of time or long term. The support could include preparing meals, shopping, personal care, transport, managing medications and emotional support. This unpaid care and support is provided to family and friends with a disability, chronic condition, terminal illness, an alcohol or other drug issue, mental illness or who are frail aged.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) (2015), 12% of the Australian population are carers (over 2.7 million). The weekly median income* of a primary carer was $520 (42% lower than non-carers), more than two thirds of them were female and the weekly replacement value of their unpaid care was over $1 billion. For more information, see the ABS: 4430.0 - Disability, Ageing and Carers, Australia: Summary of Findings, 2015.
To achieve greater acknowledgement and understanding of what carers do and improve the quality of their life, DAISI currently works in three distinct but overlapping areas:
- We work with service providers to increase knowledge about carers’ needs and to expand and improve the services that are available
- We work with the broader community to gain a greater appreciation of the enormous contribution carers make and encourage community members to engage with carers and assist in their caring work
- We also work directly with carers to increase their access to support services, their connect to each and their opportunities for engagement with their communities. We also run projects to support the particular needs of specific groups of carers.
Recognising that carers often need assistance to keep caring for the person who needs their help, DAISI also maintains a list of useful national, NSW and Northern Rivers support organisations and their contact details in our Carer Support & Assistance Factsheet. We also have Young Carers and Grand-Carer Support Factsheets on our Useful Information page.
Some examples of DAISI’s current work with specific carer groups include the:
- Working Carer Gateway project: a website and regular news feed created to provide articles and information for working carers. It is the only program from a regional, rural and remote perspective that solely targets carers who also have work commitments and has been delivering information, resources and support for the past 11 years.
- Back to School Program: is a project that acknowledges grandparents who act as the primary carers for their school aged grandchildren (Grand carers) by providing a $50.00 Target gift voucher for each school aged grandchild in their care. The gift vouchers are intended to assist these primary Grand-Carers with ‘Back to School’ expenses. Funding for this program is secured by Northern Rivers Community Foundation (NRCF) in partnership with Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal (FRRR). DAISI is NRCF’s partner in rolling out this initiative locally.
- Grand-Carers Luncheon: during Seniors Week, DAISI honours Grand-Carers and fosters knowledge sharing, skills and workforce development and connection between Grand-Carers and service providers and arts academics and students through the provision of a luncheon event in the Northern Rivers area, in partnership with the North Coast TAFE.
If you are a carer and would like to know more about DAISI’s current projects, need help connecting with community and service supports, or have ideas for how your needs can be better met, please contact us by calling 1800 800 340 or (02) 6686 7887, or by email firstname.lastname@example.org
Links to Other Key Organisations
Carers Australia is the national peak body representing Australia’s carers, advocating on behalf of Australia’s carers to influence policies and services at a national level. It works collaboratively with partners and its member organisations, the Network of state and territory Carers Associations, to deliver a range of essential national carer services.
Phone: 1800 242 636
Interrelate is a not-for-profit provider of relationship services that specialises in supporting parents and children. Its Caring For Carers program provides a specialised counselling service for full-time carers who have a dependent child or adult with a disability, mental illness, chronic condition or terminal illness.
Phone: 1300 473 528