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The Care Workers Charity (CWC)

Chief Executive, Alex Ramamurthy, tells us more about his charity's work to help care staff in need across the UK

Care Worker and client

Tell us a bit about the history of the Care Workers Charity

It was surprising to think that pre-2009 there was no national charity set up to support care staff. With a workforce of over 1.5m, one of Britain’s largest, and many of whom find themselves on the breadline, almost every other profession had a benevolent fund except one for care workers.

In 2009, the Care Workers Charity (CWC) launched to fill that gap. We support current, former and retired care workers with hardship grants of up to £500. Backed by a strong board of trustees with some of the biggest names in the care sector.

What support do you offer?

The Care Workers Charity accepts applications from individuals (or their financial dependents) who have worked directly within the Care Profession.

The care profession includes: care homes for the older people and for younger adults, domiciliary care providers, day centres and supported living providers. All employee roles and grades in any of these registered environments including care staff, cleaners, back office, catering and managers.

Applicants need to have:

  • One year's continuous service if currently employed as above, or

  • Three years' continuous service in the last five years if no longer employed, or

  • Six years' continuous service in the last 10 years if no longer employed, or

  • Over 10 years in their total working lifetime.

We offer hardship grants of up to £500 to get care workers, and families of, out of a crisis situation. Recently launched an online information and advice section covering topics care workers are most worried about; money, health and wellbeing.

Can you give an example of someone you have helped?

Vienna is 56 years old, has worked in care for over 10 years and has rheumatoid arthritis. She was finding it progressively difficult to get into and out of her bath at home. As time went by she stopped being able to wash herself. This had a dramatic effect on her life. Vienna stopped going to work and dropped out of social circles for fear of what her friends and family would think of her when they hugged and smelt her.

Vienna approached us in January for a grant to convert her bath into a walk-in shower. We were delighted to be able to help. The work completed in February and Vienna is now back at work and happy again.

You can hear more about Vienna in the video at the end of this page.

What are your plans for the future?

With our current grant budget of £75,000 we are only able to help a couple of hundred people/families a year. We have a workforce of over 1.5m. Add funding cuts and an ageing population to a physically and mentally challenging role, and care staff can all too easily be pushed beyond their financial limits. We need more funding to raise further awareness of our cause and support those who need it. We also need to address those working in care who may not be at crisis point, but may be on their way. Preventative services and salary stretching is something we are keen to explore.

Find out more

Browse the Care Workers Charity website

Read the Care Workers Charity profile on the Turn2us Grants Search

Date of publication: November 2017