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Care Alliance

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'Guiding support for family carers'

History

In 1995 a group of voluntary organisations, many condition or issue specific, came together with a view to forming an alliance.

The idea was that the formation of such an alliance could be an effective way of raising the awareness both within their own organisations and externally, about the valuable role played by family carers.

Since 1999 we have received state funding. In 2000 the first annual conference was held. In more recent years we have been active in commissioning and collaborating on primary family carer research, disseminating family carer research, making submissions and in preparing discussion documents. In 2007 we initiated the first ever National Carers Week, which in 2022 will celebrate its 16th year. In 2006 we received Charitable Status and in 2008 were formally incorporated. In 2012 we set up a Facebook Page, which has grown to over 23,500 followers, most of whom are family carers. In recent years our membership has expanded to include a wider range of NGOs and now stands at 95. In November 2013 we became fully compliant with the Governance Code for Community and Voluntary organisations, amongst the first in the sector. We have won the Good Governance awards three years in a row (2016,2017,2018) and were shortlisted in 2020.

In early 2020, we set up the Online Family Carer Support Group which now has nearly 3,000 active members. Thanks to annual HSE funding, this project is now on a sustainable financial footing.

In 2021, we set up two new projects (Kaleidoscope) to support family carers return to the paid workforce and Return Ready to enhance the ICT skills of family carers.

Care Alliance has a board of 11 directors. Care Alliance employs an Executive Director, a Senior Policy and Research Officer and five other staff on specific projects. The work of Care Alliance is informed by our constitution and by our Strategic Plan 2019-2024.