A HELPLINE has been launched to help the one in 10 people in Kirklees who act as unpaid carers.

The NHS helpline – called Carers Direct – is aimed at those who do not access any help or support from health and social care organisations.

Of carers living in Kirklees, two-thirds fall into this category.

The phone helpline is there to offer them free information and support.

Clr Molly Walton, Kirklees Cabinet member for Adult Services, said: “There are nearly 40,000 people in Kirklees who care for a family member, partner, friend or neighbour because they are ill, frail or have a disability and the care they provide is unpaid.

“More than two-thirds – over 26,837 people – do not see themselves as carers and do not seek advice or support from health or social care organisations who could help them.

“The Carers Direct helpline aims to reach these ‘hidden’ carers and encourage them to call to find out what practical and financial support may be available.”

The new helpline is being advertised through the Who Cares? campaign, which is supported by celebrity doctor Hilary Jones.

He said: “Carers can often neglect their own health and wellbeing as the person they care for is their main priority.

“I’m supporting the campaign to ensure that the millions of carers across the UK are taking advantage of the support available to them.”

The Carers Direct free helpline is on 0808 802 0202 or visit www.nhs.uk/carersdirect