Monday, 6 October 2008

Extra time for Carers - a Wigan Athletic initiative

I thought this was a refreshing change from the stories you usually hear about Premier League football clubs and their players

Wigan’s army of unpaid carers can now find some ‘extra time’ for themselves watching Premiership football at the JJB – for free.

‘Extra time for carers’ is a joint Wigan Council/Wigan Athletic scheme to give council-registered unpaid carers – hard-pressed people who look after friends and family members – an afternoon out at the big match.

Carers Development Officer, Steven Hill, explains:
“We have hundreds of people on our books who dedicate themselves to supporting others – now they can support the Latics too.

“Being a carer can be incredibly rewarding, but the stress, anxiety and sacrifice can take its toll. If you’re looking after people who, for example, might be frail, disabled or chronically-ill, you’re going to need a break now and again.

“So, if you’re a registered unpaid carer and you fancy an afternoon at the football, find out more about ‘Extra time for carers’.”

Wigan Athletic’s Manager, Steve Bruce, adds:
“'Extra time for carers’ is a great idea and we are delighted to be involved in the scheme. Anybody taking up the offer can be sure of a warm welcome here at the JJB Stadium and we look forward to even more supporters getting behind our team.”

About 1,400 unpaid carers are currently registered with the council’s Carer Support Team. Anybody interested in the ‘Extra time for carers’ scheme, which kicks-off this Saturday (4th October) when Latics entertain Middlesbrough, should contact the team on 01942 705967.

If the scheme proves successful, it could be extended to include summer rugby next year.

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