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Carers support

Are you a carer?

The term “carer” refers to someone who spends a significant proportion of their time providing support to family or friends. This could be caring for a relative, partner or friend who is ill, frail, disabled or has mental health or substance misuse problems (Department of Health 2008).

The term ‘Carer’ should not be confused with the term “care staff” who are either undertaking a caring role as part of paid employment or as volunteers attached to a voluntary organisation (DOH 2008).

The 'Our Dorset' ambition is for everyone to have the best possible health and care outcomes, and live healthier, longer and fulfilling lives.

Health and care organisations across the Dorset county area are working in partnership to recognise, support and value unpaid carers of all ages. This includes listening to carers, commissioning and providing support and enabling carers to have a life outside of caring.

These organisations include:

  • Bournemouth Christchurch and Poole Council including CRISP (Carers' Resource Information and Support Programme)
  • Dorset Council including partners Carer Support Dorset & Rethink
  • Dorset Healthcare University NHS Foundation Trust
  • Dorset NHS Clinical Commissioning Group
  • Dorset County Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
  • University Hospitals Dorset NHS Foundation Trust (Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Hospitals)
  • Help & Care, Leonardo Trust, Dorset Carers Hub and Pramacare

This reflects the vision of Our Dorset (Dorset's integrated care system) that councils, NHS bodies and the voluntary sector work together to achieve through joined-up health and care services, linking together with community resources to support people and carers to look after themselves and promote their wellbeing.

These pages aim to provide carers with information and directions to other support agencies you may find helpful.


Your safety and welfare is very important to us. Please note, the Trust is unable to guarantee or verify the validity of information provided by any external organisations and the contacts offered on this website are for information and support purposes only. These links do not imply any partiality from our Trust for particular organisations and do not signify endorsement. All page users are responsible for ensuring their own safety and judgement when using the information provided. For tailored advice, please contact your local GP.