Category Archives: epilepsy

Carers are the best kind of people. So why are they treated so disgracefully?

My brother’s carer had to leave, her minimum wage not enough to survive on. My brother is heartbroken. I’m furious

The Guardian,

Swimming carer

‘There is no training course in the world that can truly prepare you for becoming a carer: it’s something you either have or you don’t.’ Photograph: Gary Calton

We lost someone important to us this weekend. My mum rang me, crying from a hotel room, after Megan had said goodbye, and what a shame it was. She didn’t want to go. We didn’t want her to go either.

Megan was my younger brother’s carer. His autism and epilepsy means he needs round-the-clock assistance. Megan had split up with her boyfriend, and the minimum wage she was being paid was not enough for her to live alone – so she has to go away, to live with her parents. My brother will not understand this: he will just see that she is gone, and miss her. But we understand it. Having witnessed the work of a succession of carers while I was growing up, I not only noticed what an incredible, noble thing it is to devote your time to looking after someone more vulnerable than you, but also how little society gives a toss about it.

Islington home carers’ financial support ring fenced in council pledge

Mrs Willson, 71, hailed the decision to ring fence home carers’ cash at a time when budgets are pressed

Jean Willson Jean Willson

By David Churchill Saturday, August 3, 2013
5:00 PM

A leading care figure has hailed Islington Council’s decision to ring fence money available to home carers for assisting disabled loved ones.

Jean Willson OBE, who was recently given the Freedom of the Borough, claims Islington’s estimated 16,000 carers save local taxpayers about £15 million a year.

In recognition of their huge humanitarian effort, Cllr Janet Burgess, Islington Council’s executive member for health and well-being, this week pledged to ring fence money for carers until at least 2015/16.

Carers, of which there are more than 15,000 according to the 2011 Census, can currently claim up to £30-a-week depending on how severely disabled their loved one is.

However, only about 1,000 claim, according to Cllr Burgess, who is pushing a drive to reach more.

She said: “When you think about it, 1,000 isn’t a lot compared to the total number of carers that we know exist across the borough.

‘Life as a carer can be a constant battle’

‘Life as a carer can be a constant battle’

Thursday, May 30, 2013


HUSBAND and wife Stuart and Helen McIntosh are a couple who truly know the meaning of the vow ‘in sickness and in health’.

While Helen suffers from epilepsy, her husband Stuart is wheelchair-bound following a fall at work.

  1. CARERS: Stuart  and Helen McIntosh. Picture: Chris Huthwaite

    CARERS: Stuart and Helen McIntosh. Picture: Chris Huthwaite

The Newcastle couple are not only carers for each other but also help to take care of their two sons, who have disorders on the Autism spectrum.

Now they have both been nominated for the Sentinel’s Our Heroes Awards in the Adult Carer of the Year category.

Stuart, aged 48, of Seabridge Lane, said: “I was working as a production manager for a pottery firm about 20 years ago when I fell and severely damaged my ankle.

“Because I couldn’t stand up for long periods, I got a job as a bus driver.

“However, in the end, I had to leave my job to look after Helen and the boys.

“Now, I help to look after her and she helps to look after me.