The Benevolent Society, in association with Carer Gateway, has launched ‘Carer Conversations,’ a new podcast that provides tips and resources to help unpaid carers look after their emotional, mental and physical wellbeing.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, there are approximately 2.7 million carers in Australia. Carer Gateway is the Australian Government’s free national carer support service with providers across Australia, including The Benevolent Society which supports Metropolitan Sydney [excluding South Western Sydney and Nepean].
‘Carer Conversations’ host, Patty Kikos (pictured below) – who is a qualified counsellor and coach for Carer Gateway at The Benevolent Society – says the podcast is a great resource for anyone caring for a family member or friend who has a disability, a medical condition, mental illness or someone who is frail due to age, particularly in the leadup to National Carers Week (October 16-22).
A photo of Patty smiling during a podcast recording
“It can be easy for carers to put the needs of the person they’re supporting ahead of their own, which may lead to burn out, feelings of isolation and other issues,” says Patty. “Our mission with this podcast is to provide information, resources and inspiration to empower carers who invest so much time and energy in their caring role.
“I’ll be interviewing guests from a variety of different industries that have specialised knowledge and can provide tools and strategies to benefit carers. We will also be interviewing carers who will share their stories to help inspire others.”
Episode 1: This introductory episode is all about Carer Gateway – what they do and how they started. It will answer all your questions: What is a carer? What kinds of services and support can I access through Carer Gateway? You’ll hear an easy step-by-step guide into the process demonstrating how simple it is for carers to get the support they need.
Episode 2: Rose Rowlson, a clinical counselling consultant and trainer, discusses the journey of grief, talking listeners through the huge voyage of transformation, healing and discovery. Sometimes as carers we grieve the people who are still here but will never be the same, because they've either suffered a stroke, a heart attack, a mental illness or they’ve developed dementia or Parkinson's disease. This episode discusses the five stages of grief and how you can get through it.
Episodes 3 & 4: This special two-part episode will feature insights from Fiona Aldridge from Autism Spectrum Australia (Aspect), who specialises in the assessment and diagnosis for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Intellectual and Development Disabilities and Learning Difficulties. Fiona will discuss ASD in depth and how it is diagnosed and offer advice to parents or carers who have concerns about their children.
“While being a carer is rewarding, it can also have its challenges,” Patty adds. “It’s important for carers to know they’re not alone. This podcast will offer carers a feeling of connection and inspiration. If you are a carer, you are allowed to take time to look after yourself. You are just as important as the person you take care of.”
Subscribe to ‘Carer Conversations’ wherever you listen to your podcasts including Apple, Spotify and other platforms. For more information on The Benevolent Society’s Carer Gateway program and podcast, click here.
If you’re caring for a family member or friend with disability, mental illness, a medical condition, or they are frail due to age, contact Carer Gateway on 1800 422 737 Monday to Friday between 8am and 5pm or visit the website www.carergateway.gov.au