A Liverpool-based organisation has brought together businesses across the city region to offer much needed support for carers.
MyTime is an award-winning project part of Liverpool charity Local Solutions, that aims to give unpaid carers a break from their demanding caring roles. An unpaid carer is anyone who cares for a family member or friend.
The MyTime project offers them the opportunity to take a break in the form of overnight stays in local hotels, meals out or special events with people in similar situations. MyTime has brought together various Liverpool-based businesses, as well as some from outside of the city region too, who in the past have offered carers everything from a stay in a hotel, theatre tickets, afternoon teas and meals out as well as activities such as drinks masterclasses at Smugglers Cove, tours of Sefton Park Palmhouse and movie nights at Staybridge Suites.
It’s not just individual breaks that the project organises, prior to lockdown MyTime arranged various events for groups of carers across the city, offering them the chance to meet people who are in similar situations to themselves. Some of these events included a gin masterclass at The Clubhouse and an event at the iconic Cavern Club for over 80 local carers.
When the pandemic hit, MyTime were forced to change how they worked and dedicated their time to offering carers things such as wellbeing calls and shopping whilst local restaurant Lunya supplied 150 frozen meals that were delivered to carers across the city, removing the stress of cooking dinner.
One of the local carers who was able to take advantage of a MyTime facilitated break after lockdown said:
“I have been feeling exhausted, physically and mentally, shielding a loved one for months on end without a break at all had taken its toll so it couldn’t have come at a better time. It was so good to have something to look forward to for a change.
I certainly tried to make the most of my time away from my caring role, went for a walk, rediscovered the amazing city, and ate out for the first time in I don’t know how long. The staff there are just so lovely and welcoming, and it felt really safe. I really felt the pressure lift off my shoulders. I am back to it now but feeling so much better. What a great apartment, slept like a log and woke up feeling refreshed, something I haven’t done for such a long time”
For the MyTime project, they rely on the generosity of local businesses. As lockdown restrictions ease, the project is looking to once again engage with businesses across the city region to work together to offer a much needed break for some of the city’s carers. The project has already had two new hotels sign-up post-lockdown- Seel Street Hotel by Epic and StayCity Waterfront.
It’s not just breaks that MyTime helps to facilitate either. For many carers, their caring duties can mean their careers are forced to take a back seat and the project has arranged barista courses for over 20 carers, offering them career prospects when their caring role comes to an end.
If you would like to get involved with MyTime and offer respite for carers in the shape of an overnight stay, activity, meal or another idea then head to their website or give them a call on 0151 705 2327 / 07458144984 for more information.