Support for Carers in Abingdon

Working together to improve health and wellbeing in Abingdon

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We estimate that there are about 5000 unpaid carers in Abingdon and these are likely to save the UK economy £96 million a year yet many receive little support. However, there are a number organisations in Oxfordshire that provide a range of help and support for those with caring responsibilities in Abingdon.  

Information on groups that help carers

Carers Oxfordshire

Caring is such an important part of life. No matter what race, religion or society, caring will cross all our paths at some point.

Carers Oxfordshire is a partnership between Action for Carers Oxfordshire and Rething Mental Illness, both independent charities. Action for Carers Oxfordshire is a local charity whose sole purpose is to support the unpaid carers of Oxfordshire, Rethink Mental Illness is a national charity Working to improve the lives of people and severely affected by mental illness. Carers Oxfordshire is jointly commissioned by Heath and Social Care to provide the primary support service to carers in Oxfordshire.

Web site: 
Phone: 01235 424715

Autism Family Support...

...provides support, advice, and fun for families.  This includes

  • Information and Advice for parents/carers, includes advice surgeries, telephone support, email, e-bulletins, and support groups.
  • Youth Groups for 8 – 21 year olds autistic people without a learning disability.
  • Summer and Easter Holiday Activities fun community based activities
  • Training for parents, young people, and professionals.
  • Autism Awareness promoting awareness, and better services for families.
  • Consultation and Training for professionals.

Web site: 
Phone: 01235 754700

Fit 2 Care

Fit 2 Care is a small community group run by volunteer parent and family carers. They host affordable fitness classes in Abingdon for family and parent carers. Their aim is to improve the physical and mental health of carers through regular exercise. All classes are suitable for all fitness levels and can accommodate any carer over the age of 18.

Classes are run during school term time sometimes during the day and sometimes during the evening. Spaces are limited and the term of classes must be booked and paid for in advance. All equipment is provided to create as few barriers as possible for carers to access these classes.

Web site: 

Be Free Young Carers (BFYC)

BFYC is a local Oxfordshire charity, based in Didcot, that works with young carers aged 8 to 24 across the South Oxfordshire and Vale area. BFYC is the only specialist organisation supporting young carers in Oxfordshire and receives no statutory funding.

We have been supporting young carers for over 25 years with emotional and practical advice they need to manage the stresses and responsibilities of being a young carer, balancing their caring role with school and with the developmental needs of a child.

Be Free Young Carers addresses these needs by providing young carers with:

  • Mental Health support –We offer 121 emotional support for our most vulnerable young carers. We also have developed a Mindfulness movement and wellbeing programme to teach our young carers preventative measures and how to deal with their mental health concerns; 
  • Respite activities - time for themselves away from their caring roles, to make friends, and have fun, these are run in the school holidays. They consist of theme park visits, trips to the beach and other experiences that they would not otherwise get due to their caring role; 
  • Training - in key skills such as first aid, relaxation and cookery/nutrition to improve their self-confidence and ability to cope in their caring roles. 
  • 13+ Group – bespoke group for young carers aged 13 years and older. This group engages an age group that is usually hard to engage with and is user led. Youth Panel – group of proactive young carers that engage with BFYC to help form our policies, agenda and activities. Their feedback is crucial to developing BFYC as a charity. 
  • Young carers leisure card - discounted pay and play activities at local leisure centres; 
  • Quarterly newsletter from BFYC

Web site: 
Phone: 01235 838554

Dementia Oxfordshire

Dementia Oxfordshire  works with people diagnosed with dementia and their relatives/carers, providing ongoing support and information on the following:

  • Information about dementia
  • How to get help locally
  • Staying independent
  • Adaptations for your home
  • Benefits and allowances for those with dementia and their carers
  • Additional support and respite breaks
  • Activities and leisure opportunities
  • Planning for the future
  • Financial and legal issues

Web site: 
Phone: 01865 410 210

Dementia Friendly Abingdon

In working to make the town dementia friendly Dementia Friendly Abingdon (DFA) recognises the need to support those caring for people living with dementia. 

The weekly DFA coffee group provides a safe and supportive environment, both for a person living with dementia and their carer or supporter; allowing them to meet with others in a similar position. The attendees, aided by informed volunteers, naturally provide mutual support and friendship. The group meets on a Thursday morning at 10:30am in the Garden Room, St Ethelwold's House, 30 East St Helen Street, Abingdon OX14 5EB. 

The DFA Supporters Newsletter includes information on all sources of support for those affected by dementia, including carers. Contact us for more information about the Coffee Group or to sign up to receive the DFA Supporters Newsletter

Facebook Page; 

Oxfordshire Family Support Network

Oxfordshire Family Support Network has a small team of Family Support workers/advocates who are all family carers of people with learning disabilities themselves.

It offers:

  • Information, advice and support on a range of issues that affect families of people with learning disabilities via email or telephone. 
  • Some queries can be answered straightaway through direct advice or signposting, however if you need more ongoing or in depth support we can allocate a family support worker to help you if appropriate 
  • Support for families at meetings with professionals. 
  • Events, workshops and training opportunities for family carers and professionals. 
  • Opportunities to meet with professionals through our online Question and Answer sessions.

Web site: 
Phone: 07891 734987 or 07821 987080

Oxfordshire Crossroads Care

Oxfordshire Crossroads is a registered charity and a leading provider of home care services. Whatever your need, we will strive to accommodate you with a package of care that fits around you and your family. We also provide respite breaks to allow you time to be yourself. We listen to you.

Crossroads Care has been providing care for over 30 years and is an accredited provider, holding several contracts with local councils. We work closely with the Care Quality Commission to ensure our services are responsive and safe. We currently provide support throughout Oxfordshire, West Berkshire and the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.

Web site: 
Phone: 01865 260 280

I Care, You Care

I Care You Care

  • is the Oxford Health NHS carers strategy that looks to guide us through the next 3 years to further our commitment to put family, friends and carers at the heart of everything we do, and
  • sets out our pledge to support and seamlessly work alongside family, friends and carers as well as or patients and service users

You can read more about our aims, the progress we are making and our future plans in the strategy Family, Friends and Carers Strategy 2021-24.

Our “Caring for our carers” webpage offers various information, guidance and resources for family, friends and carers. 

For any further information please contact 

More Help

The comprehensive and easy to use website at is a great source of information for carers and people supporting them. Some highlights include:

  • The Carers' Line (01235 424715), which is open Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm, and which the team aim to answer within a few rings
  • The Carer’s Journey: free classes for carers, most of which are focused on the well-being of the carer and which are offered through Abingdon and Witney College. Recently added sessions include online yoga, self-massage with essential oils, and managing your own needs when caring for others. Some are face-to-face, but lots are run online. Carers can also apply for up to £150 towards the cost of another course at Witney and Abingdon College.
  • A partnership with Carefree which enables carers to take a one- or two-night break in the UK
  • Support to complete a Carers' Assessment to help the carer understand how they are coping and what support they might be able to access to help them to stay well. This includes the annual, non-means tested Carers Direct Payment of £300, which is provided to support carers to have some time for themselves, away from their caring responsibilities.
  • Projects such as Feet Up Fridays, under which the catering company Thomas Franks delivers meals to carers in Banbury, Abingdon and Oxford, so that for one day a week at least they don’t have to worry about dinner. Trials have also been run to provide support with cleaning and laundry.
  • A referral form, which Carers Oxfordshire is encouraging people to use when referring clients.
  • The thrice-yearly Care Matters magazine, the latest edition of which is attached.
  • Carer ID
  • The Max Card, for families of with children and young adults under the age of 25, which allows discounted or free access to attractions and days out both locally and nationally
  • Be Prepared plans which carers complete with all the essential information about the person they are caring for, in case they become suddenly unable to provide that care themselves
  • Carers support groups
  • Information on benefits and referrals for benefits checks, usually in the Abingdon area to Vale Community Impact or the Oxfordshire Specialist Advice Service (currently very long waiting times).
  • If you’re working with a carer whose first language is not English, Carers Oxfordshire has access to Language Line, so a translator can be arranged if necessary. Service handbooks are also available in the most commonly spoken languages in the county.


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