Carers newsletter - edition no.14

Welcome to the latest edition of our carers newsletter, providing carers and relatives with information on the support available within the Trust and the county. 

Carer updates

Carer Passports

We have developed a Carer Passport to help support and inform carers of those accessing LPFT services.

For more information email

Carers Lanyard and ID cards

To accompany our Carers Passport we now have lanyards and Carer ID cards.  These can be use when visiting your loved ones and liaising with staff.  Available on request via email from LPFT Carers Teams.

Carer Champions in Acute Services

We are delighted to share with you that we now have four Carer Champions in Acute Services at LPFT. These Carer Champions are dedicated to supporting carers of patients across our Acute Wards of Connolly Ward, Charlesworth Ward, Ash Villa and Ward 12.

Support and Advice

Visiting on wards

When visiting the person you care for on one of our wards, please ask the ward staff about the specific arrangements for Carers.  

One to one support/individual advice

If you have any questions or concerns our Carer Support Team can offer one to one support and advice.  Please contact us by emailing, even if it is only for a chat!  

Lincolnshire County Council - general support for Carers

Lincolnshire County Council (LCC) has a general advice page for Carers which has information on a range of topics, including benefits and entitlements, emergency care planning and carers assessments.

More information can be found online at

North East Lincolnshire

North East Lincolnshire now has its own SPA (Single Point of Access) for both adults and children mental health services. 

If your need help with a mental health crisis please call the 24/7 helpline at NAViGO on 01472 256256, option 3.  Further information for Carers living in North East Lincolnshire is available from The Carer Support Service for North and North East Lincolnshire.

For young people’s mental health support, call LPFT's Young Minds Matter Team on  01472 252570 Mon - Fri 9am-4:30pm, or outside of these hours - North East Lincolnshire SPA 01472 256256 (option 3) or email:

North East Lincolnshire - Young Carers Assessment

Young Carers Assessments in North East Lincolnshire are undertaken by Carer Support Centre.  For more information about the services and activities available for Young Carers in North East Lincolnshire please contact:

Carers Story

Giving birth is momentous – the excitement, anticipation, bravery and challenge were huge for me. To find out three days later that your gorgeous, sweet, perfect 10 toes and fingers new baby has had a massive stroke at some point recently, stops your world in its tracks. Woah! That was not supposed to happen…

So began the rollercoaster of emotion, the need to suddenly be ‘A Grown Up’ - the endless medical appointments, the interminable form filling and the slow seeping away of the life I had imagined for myself as a romantic day-dreaming teenager. I learnt the medical approach of the time – basically do nothing and see what happens, then address it with corrective action. That did not sit well with me and so I took initiative. I learnt about brain development and plasticity, the importance of nutrition and the impact a quiet environment and early nights had on her wellbeing and my sanity. I learnt to swallow my boredom as we began each day’s two-hour physio regime and put on my jolly face for another rendition of The Wheels on the Bus. I learnt patience and the need to stand up for someone. In fact, I learnt to fight passionately - I became a Mother Lioness (and apologised to those who felt the sharp end of my exhaustion, grief, aloneness and despair).

I wish families did not have to fight to get attention/ support/ funding when they are already dealing with so much. And I hope things might change so those following us have more energy to focus on the things that really matter – loving their children, perhaps even their poor partner too! But, what I now know is that once I found someone who got what I was going through from their own lived experience, things felt a little more possible. At last, someone who really ‘got it’. I swallowed the pill of understanding that I have to do this in some form for the rest of my life and that is just how it is, which is actually OK, perhaps even how things are meant to be. I realised I am resilient and resourceful and if I look after myself, I can keep doing this. I can rise to this challenge.

It has been a long struggle internally to learn that when life presents you with lemons, it’s easier to stop wishing for plums instead and learn to press those lemons into delicious refreshing special lemonade.  Maybe it comes with age too, a gentle settling into the way of things, accepting what is here in my every day and finding ways to notice peacefulness, the rays of sunshine, the simple beauty of the natural world around me and that wonderful moment when the penny drops and her face lights up (like the time she suddenly understood that Mary Poppins was not in love with a chimney sweep AND Baron Von Trapp).

My ‘beloved dorter’ as she used to sign off, is now 24-years-old and although still mostly dependent on me, is beginning to unfurl her wings and experience life for herself. Finally, she has a diagnosis of autism to go with the other labels and it genuinely feels like we have built a solid foundation as we face the next cliff edge together – that being the end of college life and her EHCP and exploration of some other purposeful occupation and gradual move out from under my wing… or should I say paw? I marvel at her bravery and am in awe of her as I imagine what life might feel like from her perspective. Quite something. Life is certainly interesting!


Older People and Frailty

Older People & Frailty Divisional Support

If you would like information, support or advice about your caring role, please contact our Older Adults Carer Lead, Jules Weldon at

Visiting on the wards changes regularly as COVID safety guidelines are amended by the Trust.  Please speak to the ward staff before planning a visit.  If you are caring for someone in our Older Adults Inpatient Services and would like to send messages, letters or photographs, these can also be sent to and we will ensure they are printed and given to your loved one.  

LPFT Dementia Support Service

Our Dementia Support Service offers a wealth of information and guidance on how to live as well as possible with the diagnosis of dementia or mild cognitive impairment.  This information and guidance is available for both Carers and the person living with the diagnosis.  It ranges from information relating to the diagnosis, how Carers can support their loved ones to how Carers can maintain their own wellbeing.  

For more information please email or call our SPA (Single Point of Access) on 0303 123 4000.

Please see below a list of other useful contacts for Carers:  

Young Carers and Young Adult Carers

Young Carers

It is harder to identify a Young Carer supporting someone with poor mental health.  Trying to help someone who is distressed can be one of the hardest things to do. Young Carers offer compassion and empathy to parents, struggling with their mental health when they listen and talk to them. They provide encouragement by trying to understand their problems.  These Young Carers will worry about the person they care for while they are at school. This makes it hard for the Young Carer to concentrate on their school work. They may be unable to spend time with friends, and may feel lonely and isolated.  For support and advice for Young Carers please email or call 01522 553275.

Here4You advice line for children, young people and parents

Lincolnshire children, young people and parents who are struggling with mental health and emotional issues can contact or make a self referral to the "Here4You" 24/7 advice and self referral telephone service on 0800 234 6342. More information can also be found at 

Adult Carers 

If you are aged 18+ and support a relative or friend with physical and mental tasks, help is available for this caring role.  An initial conversation should be arranged with Lincolnshire Carers Service.

The team will discuss your caring role, any problems you are experiencing and then work with you to find solutions. There is a wide range of support available to unpaid carers within the county. This includes information and advice on benefits, Carers Emergency Response Plan (CERS), regular newsletter and updates about events happening in the community.  For more complex, specialist or ongoing support a statutory Carers Assessment may be undertaken.  

If you would like more information and support for your caring role, please contact LPFT Carer Team or Lincolnshire Carers Service on 01522 782224.

Spotlight on...

My name is Carmen and I am one of the original Carer Champions. My job is to support carers and relatives of our patients in Conolly Ward at Peter Hodgkinson Centre in Lincoln. I started in this position in January last year as a (initially) 2 month secondment but here I am 14 months on and still going strong.

Most of my role entails weekly/daily phone calls to carers providing updates about their loved ones’ progress and I offer them support and a kind ear to listen to their concerns and offer reassurance. If they wish it, I continue contact with them throughout the whole admission until discharge. Some people require a lot of information because this is their first experience with mental health services and they do not know yet what it is going to happen or what to expect, so in these cases, the contact tends to be more regular and closer. This is one of the parts that I enjoy the most about my job, to be fair. I find that giving the carers a first good experience with our services completely changes the way they will perceive it and being given that opportunity is a privilege.

I love my job, it gives me a great sense of fulfilment and I know I help people every day, even though I find myself having to deliver bad news quite often due to the nature of the ward. Ever since I started, I told myself I would always be honest with carers and I would never make any false promises. I do feel like people appreciate it because they know what to expect. Most of the carers I have supported let me know how grateful they are to me, and that makes me feel like I am making a difference. I am very happy that the Trust decided to invest in carer support ,giving me the chance to discover who is behind our patients, supporting them every day and making their lives better.

You can contact the Carers Team through our dedicated email address

You can contact the Involvement Team if you would like to get involved through our dedicated email address


Carers Education Group

Do you care for a family member?

Do you need support and education?

Join our established group, online every other Thursday evening! 

For further information on how to join, please email

Carer Support Contact Details

Recovery College courses

Lincolnshire Recovery College offers free educational courses on mental health and wellbeing to everyone, including carers, over the age of sixteen years.  The courses are designed and delivered by people with lived experience of mental ill health, qualified trainers and health professionals. The College offers specific courses for Carers, such as one on Compassion Fatigue.  Similar courses are being developed for Carers.  

Veterans Support in Lincolnshire

Have you or your loved one served in the British Armed Forces?  If so, you may find it helpful to talk to the Specialist Veterans Service to gain an understanding of the services available.  It might be that the support you receive for your mental health can be enhanced via referral to Operation Courage.

Please see the list below of contacts details of services which can provide help to Carers and relatives:

Carers Support WhatsApp Group

LPFT has a Carers Support WhatsApp group.  This is a support group that enables Carers to share information and advice with one another and acts as a sounding board. It is a closed group and is a safe space to share, ask for advice and chat in general.  If you would like to be added to this group please email the LPFT Carers Support Team

Volunteers Please…

As the group has grown so large, it has been decided it will be split into smaller groups to maintain relevance and connection by becoming diagnosis specific. We are looking for carers to volunteer to be moderators for the groups. LPFT staff will support each group’s administration but it is a group run by Carers for Carers. Please contact Donna Bradford, Head of Carer Support Team if you are interested in helping. We would LOVE to hear from you!

Help for Carers and Relatives

Single Point of Access (SPA): 0303 123 4000

Mental Health 24/7 Helpline: 0800 001 4331 

LPFT Trust HQ: 01522 309200

LPFT Carer Team: 

Samaritans: 0330 094 5717

Future editions

If  you have any articles for the next edition of the carers newsletter, please send them to

Thank you 

Thank you to members of our Carers Council and everyone who has contributed to this edition of the LPFT carers newsletter. 

We look forward to receiving more articles, information and stories for our next edition. 

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