Caring is an issue which affects every family in the UK, and at some point in our lives we will all care for a loved one or need care ourselves.
Whilst caring for someone close to you can be rewarding, it also forces many family carers into ill-health, poverty and isolation. Alongside 6.5 million personal stories of the frustration, despair, satisfaction and joy of caring, caring is also rapidly becoming one of the biggest political challenges of the 21st century. With policy implications for health and social care, benefits, pensions, equalities and workplace rights, how we care for older, ill and disabled people in our families and public services is a political issue which cannot be avoided.
As the largest organisation for Family carers in Suffolk, Suffolk Family Carers is in touch with thousands of Family Carers with stories to tell, providing information, advice and guidance to Family Carers of all ages across Suffolk.
Contact our Communications Link on 01473 835404 if you would like case studies and spokespeople.
As caring becomes increasingly important in our society, the media, including newspapers, radio and television, may be interested in stories from you as a family carer. In order to assist you in working with the media, we would like to share with you the following information and guidance:
There are many positive factors for families when speaking to the press – you can have your voice heard, you may be able to influence a wider group of professionals and the public, you can help make sure the Family Carers agenda is uppermost in people’s minds.
Suffolk Family Carers is very keen to ensure that Family Carers can get involved when they want to. You can obtain support in involvement with the media from the Service Managers, Project Managers and also Support Workers within the organisation.
The words used by the press to describe your story may not be the words you would choose, so try to be as clear as possible about what you want to say. Stories are often made to sound more dramatic than they are in reality as this makes a more interesting read.
It is very unlikely that you will have a chance to see the final article to correct errors before publication.
Once your story is in the media, you will no longer have control over it. It may be reprinted on different occasions and used by other newspapers or media groups, both locally and nationally. Different publications may present your story different than the original publication.
Use your own judgement to consider whether the impact of the story may be negative to your family. The media do not generally advise families on these issues. If in doubt, consult Suffolk Family Carers, who has experience of working with the media.
The press will look for a story that has a compelling human interest angle. Please bear in mind that you do not have to share any personal details if you do not wish to.
Where you wish to provide a photograph of you or your family to the press, consider whether your younger children (if involved) understand what they are consenting to and whether they will still be happy with this decision when they are older.
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