Are you looking for a way to shake off those midwinter blues? Then why not make 2018 the year you get involved with volunteering for West Cumbria Carers?

West Cumbria Carers is a registered charity, and as the name implies, it’s local, supporting carers in Copeland and Allerdale. Not only that, they’re also very friendly people! Great if: “Expand my social circle” is on your New Year wish list!

The charity currently has opportunities in the Cockermouth area for the following:

Sitters regularly visit the cared for. This allows the carer to have a valuable break for a few hours with the peace of mind that comes with knowing the person they care for is being safely looked after. However, this does not include personal care needs.

Drivers help carers to attend vital health appointments or a support session/activity/event that otherwise would be missed.

Counsellors provide this specialist form of therapy to those that need it as a result of their caring role.

Carer Supporters can regularly visit or contact someone who needs help in building confidence or becoming socially active again.

Carers Champions raise awareness of the charities services with carers in the workplace and the public. They assist in identifying carers who may wish to receive support.

West Cumbria Samaritans

Samaritans began as a suicide prevention service in 1953. In 1967, a branch was set up in Whitehaven and this has provided a continuous service ever since. However, we are very short of volunteers and there is serious concern for the future... Could you help?

Our service provides emotional support in times of crisis and only 20% of our callers are suicidal. Contacts are made by telephone, email, text and face-to-face.

Emotional distress or suicidal thoughts are often associated with a crisis, a stressful life or personal loss. Most often, over 60% of those attempting suicide, have a mental health problem, perhaps related to depression or other illness. Often, a person with suicidal feelings experiences an ambivalence - the wish to die existing at the same time as a wish to be rescued and saved.

Our service allows people to explore feelings and this can be immensely helpful in helping to find solutions to distress. Talking about suicidal feelings to those you know is immensely difficult. Crisis hotlines like the Samaritans are confidential, anonymous and we do not have caller ID.

Would you be able to help as a volunteer with West Cumbria Samaritans?

We have an information event on Sunday 25th February at 2.00pm, followed by 1-to-1 sessions a week later, if you would like to join us. The training course is free, at weekends and in the evening.

Visit West Cumbria Samaritans, cumbria and the national site, and fill in the volunteer enquiry form. Alternatively just call into our office at 23 Church Street, Whitehaven, CA28 7EB on the 25th February at 2.00pm.

Alastair Sharp West Cumbria Samaritans Whitehaven

INFO@THECOCKERMOUTHPOST.CO.UK ISSUE 422 | 25 JANUARY 2018 | 24 50th Anniversary of

West Cumbria Carers want you to enjoy your volunteering experience, they highly value and appreciate all their volunteers and the time they give. All volunteers are offered free training when they join along with ongoing support and refresher training going forward.

Further, more detailed information can be found on the website along with an online application form. Alternatively, if you would prefer to complete an application form in writing or talk to someone, just call 01900 821 976.

If you’d like to talk to a current volunteer about their experience just ask.

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