Hello Everyone – Rudeness can be challenging when you have a cold…

Yesterday was not a good day for me.

I left home early but was delayed due to the weather to get to work a prepare for the Carers Trust and Chinese Chamber of Commerce UK visit, which by the way went extremely well.  The Chamber of Commerce handed the Carers Trust a cheque to fund future carer respite endeavours.  This is important as The Centre is in receipt of funding to enable the weekly Carers Drop In’s at the Buddhist Centre, as you can see both CCTH and The Carers Trust values respite for carers and we believe that it enables better wellbeing for carers.   Thank you to the carers who attended and made it a worthwhile experience as well as showing them our Arts, Crafts and Conversation project.   Thanks to Graham for a great speech and showing our guests the carers centre, we hope to welcome the Carers Trust back for Carers Week.

On my way home I popped into see Mum, I had been shopping and got some treats and was feeling tired and full of cold.  My first words were ‘I can’t kiss you due to my cold’ and we had a laugh.

However, earlier in the week my Sister and I had a good chat about taking a weekend off a month so that we can have time at home, catch up on family things and just chill out and have some respite (see what I did there, link the two stories together because respite is essential for carers).

So, I mentioned this to Mum and you would of thought the world had come to an end, she was rude and not very nice.  I excused myself and went home, I did use the assertiveness and self protection skills that I often discuss with you as carers because at the end of the day we have to protect ourselves emotionally and we are not an emotional punchbag.  It is not healthy, it can be traumatic and removing yourself allows you to come back, refreshed and able to carry on.

Yes, I am off to see Mum tomorrow, I will pick Dad up, go shopping, visit, take him home and eventually get home myself.  I would of done my caring role to the best of my ability but most importantly enabled my hard working sister to have a weekend off.  Caring really is a juggling act, not just practically, physically but also emotionally.

So, where possible negotiate what you need, share caring tasks with family and get some rest as we all need it.


Don’t forget that the activities we run are aimed at giving carers a chance for emotional respite, enabling connection with others so you do not feel alone and giving carers the chance to have fun, relax and be in the moment.


Don’t forget..

Carers Forum – Tuesday 14th March at 1.30pm and this will be a Hybrid session – so either come in person or join is via Zoom.

Open University Study Group (great to see new carers joining) – do you want to learn something new, start a new hobby or just be in a learning group.  You can take your time, fit it around your caring role and have fun.

African Dance & Drumming Class 15th March – last session for now  – come and learn a new skill and exercise at the same time and why not join the last session and have a ball 

Neurodiversity Celebration Week

March 13 – 19



Self-employment Course and this will be starting on Friday 17th March- Wednesday 22nd March 2023. Times are as follows:

Fri 17th March 9.30-2pm

Monday 20th March 10am-2pm

Tuesday 21st March 10am-2pm

Wednesday 22nd March 10am- 2pm

If you want to join then email tony@ccth.org.uk and I will refer and signpost you

Bethnal Green Tube disaster remembered

Hundreds gathered at St. John on Bethnal Green Church on Sunday 5 March, to mark the 80th anniversary of the Bethnal Green tube shelter disaster – the worst civilian disaster of World War 2.

Cllr Maium Talukdar, Deputy Mayor of Tower Hamlets attended the service which was led by the Rt Rev Dr Joanne Grenfell, Bishop of Stepney, along with Fr Brian Ralph of St. Barnabas Church and Rev Christopher Morgan, Chaplain to the Bishop of Stepney.

Read more >

Life-saving equipment to be installed across Tower Hamlets

Life-saving equipment which will help stop serious blood loss in an emergency are being installed around Tower Hamlets. The bleed control kits can be used to stop bleeding, whether that is from a car crash, sports accident, or another injury.

Five bleed kits are now available in the borough, including three in Victoria Park, and one on each of the youth service buildings in Limehouse and St Andrew’s. More kits will be going up across the wards over the coming months.

Read more >

Don’t forget that if anything happens, use the numbers below and if it is an emergency dial 999.




Important Numbers:

Domestic Violence Duty Line:  020 7364 4986 between 9am – 5pm.Victim Support:  020 7364 2448/7957

Tower Hamlets Connect/Adult Social Care : 0300 303 6070

Help for Households Gives clear information about the exceptional payments, energy support and existing support schemes available, so the public know what is available and where they can find help. The homepage brings together over 40 support schemes that the public may be able to access depending on eligibility. Additionally, a range of online tools will help citizens quickly and efficiently check the support they might be eligible for and how to access it.

Next Week’s Activities – check out the https://ccth.org.uk/new/calendar/


Free Financial Wellbeing Session


Made of Money has been working with people to promote financial wellbeing for over 15 years. Our free and friendly workshops are a fun and supportive space where people can pick up some new tips and tools, share their own experiences and learn from each other.

The cost-of-living crisis is affecting so many of us these days. We are all feeling the pinch a bit more, compared to how things were a year ago.

Come and join Made of Money’s free session to discover ways to make your money stretch further and lighten the load.

We can talk about:

  • Cutting energy costs
  • Borrowing safely
  • Making money choices that work for you and your family, whatever your circumstances

We look forward to meeting you!


16th March 2:00-3.30pm


The Carers Centre

21 Brayford Square

E1 0LS

Smokers: It’s never too late to quit

England’s Deputy Chief Medical Officer, Jeanelle De Gruchy and Tracy Parr, Programme Director of the London Tobacco Alliance, stopped by Whitechapel Idea Store this week to chat with local stop smoking advisors.

The visit was part of ‘No Smoking Day’ when smokers are reminded that it’s never too late to quit.

More info >

ReThink has been consulting with Carers from the centre and the team to look at Mental Illness and sport/physical activity as a means to help with wellbeing and they would like you to take part in their survey.

This is the link to the survey questionnaire for Tower Hamlets https://forms.office.com/e/BCR4WBW5Td

Statement on abolishing social care charging in Tower Hamlets


At Real, we are delighted that Tower Hamlets Council have said they will abolish social care charges going forward as part of their 2023-24 budget plans, which were approved 1 March 2023. Instead the Council will levy a 2% Adult Social Care precept. This progressive decision ensures the cost of essential support is spread evenly across the population, rather than only billing those people who have no choice but to use the services.

Many working age Disabled people have been charged for the basics of getting out of bed, eating and washing. Real has always maintained that it is morally wrong, punitive and discriminatory against Disabled people, especially when compared to free NHS care for all.

Tower Hamlets has above average levels of disability amongst its population, and above average levels of poverty. The current administration should be proud of this decision, and we hope other local authorities around the country follow their example.

We do have some concerns on implementation though.

Why charging matters

Disabled people are not inherently vulnerable people. We have aspirations, dreams and potential which are often not fulfilled because we do not get the support we need to live our lives as equal citizens. Social care, for us, is all about putting people on an equal footing. It’s about recognising that some people need treating differently in order to have equal outcomes; essentially the very premise of reasonable adjustments under the Equality Act. The point of the Care Act, if implemented properly, is recognising exactly this. Charging for social care undermines the good intentions of the legislation.

Hopes and concerns

Despite this overall good news it appears that the decision by Tower Hamlets Council won’t be implemented until April 2024. There is plenty of evidence that Disabled people have been hit disproportionately by the cost of living crisis, and are struggling more than many with lower than average incomes and higher than average cost of living. Given the 2% Adult Social Care precept will be collected throughout 2023-24, it’s not clear to us why Disabled people need to wait another year before we see the benefit.

We would therefore urge Tower Hamlets Council to bring forward the implementation date to as soon as possible. If the decision is a right and just one, then the Council should implement it now rather than wait for a year’s revenue to be collected. It’s now that disabled people need this essential financial support, not in 13 months’ time.

We also are concerned about the statements in the budget papers relating to continuing to pursue outstanding debts beyond the implementation date. Many disabled people will have had to choose between heating, eating or getting out of bed. We would urge the local authority to review each situation case-by-case and use their discretion to waive charges.

Notwithstanding the last two points, we still applaud this bold move that flies in the face of trends across the country. Real is the only user-led organisation of Disabled people in the borough that supports Disabled people of all ages, all impairment types, and all other protected characteristics. We look forward to continuing our successful “critical friend” relationship with the Council to help make these changes a reality as soon as possible.


For many years in the 1990s and early 2000s Tower Hamlets was one of the only local authorities in the country that did not charge for domiciliary social care for Disabled people and older adults. Real were proud to work with our local authority to help them continue to see that, as a progressive local authority that fully understood that they had an option, not an obligation, to charge for these services. Following that, the London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham followed in abolishing the charges.

Subsequently we were very sad when, in 2017, Tower Hamlets Council said they had no choice but to introduce charging. This was due to budget deficits caused by cuts from central government during the austerity years. Real were not able to overturn that decision.

But we were able to work with the local authority to help them develop a best practice guide on calculating disability-related expenditure (DRE). These are the unavoidable disability-related costs that should be taken into consideration when assessing how much someone could afford to pay. Because of that co-produced DRE guidance, we were able to help many Disabled people reduce their charges or escape them altogether.

It’s great that this latest news means that we have returned to being a kinder, fairer and more progressive Borough for Disabled people.

Mike Smith, CEO of Real

Pause with a painting

Immerse yourself in one painting in these free mindfulness sessions
Various dates
  • Tuesday, 28 March 2023 – FULLY BOOKED
  • Tuesday, 25 April 2023
  • Tuesday, 23 May 2023
3 – 3.45 pm


How can one painting be used as a focus for mindfulness practice?

Find out with mindfulness and wellbeing practitioner Karly Allen in these free sessions, looking at one painting each time.

Immerse yourself in the calming environment of the Gallery’s quieter rooms, and take time to reflect, restore and feel the creative and wellbeing benefits of mindfulness.

No experience necessary, all welcome.

Tuesday, 25 April 2023

Immerse yourself in Aelbert Cuyp’s peaceful Dutch landscape.

Image: Detail from Aelbert Cuyp, ‘River Landscape with Horseman and Peasants’, about 1658-60
Tuesday, 23 May 2023

This session focuses on the floral still life of Juan de Zurbarán’s ‘Lemons in a Wicker Basket’.

Image: Detail from Juan de Zurbarán, ‘Still Life with Lemons in a Wicker Basket’, about 1643-9

Your tutor

Karly Allen is a drawing practitioner and lecturer in art history. Using drawing as a tool for looking, she has lectured widely for London art collections and cultural organisations. Karly complements her teaching with her training as a mindfulness teacher. Co-director of Limina Collective, she is passionate about the potential for mindfulness techniques to enhance our experience of engaging with art.




Extra funding to support food banks

As part of our Cost of Living Help campaign – an extra £190,000 is being invested to provide essential supplies to food banks across the borough.

The money will go to the Food Hub based in Bethnal Green. The hub remains a key part of the food support network in the borough and supports more than 60 organisations as well as providing volunteering opportunities for residents who benefit from soft skills on the path to employment.

Find out more >

Launch of Somali National Helpline 0800 6102020

Better Safe Communities are pleased to inform you of the launch of the first historic Somali National Helpline, sponsored by the local businesses up and down the country and in regards to poor service provisions of UK public services for Somali communities nationally.

The Helpline was founded by Khadra Hersi, a student of London Met University. It is aimed at the Somali community, helping with language barriers, immigration, and mental health issues due to war in their country. The Somali National Helpline are a service that uses professionals to support people overcome issues they are facing. They exist to support individuals with language matters, mental health issues, and beneficiaries to solve their problems. They also provide translating and interpreting services. They are here to support and advocate for many problems faced within the Somali community such as young adults suffering from knife crime, and elderly people who feel isolated and lonely due to language barriers.


Why do you need a Lasting Power of Attorney? 

Does the person you look after making their own decisions but want help managing their money? Maybe they can make their own decisions now but want an arrangement in case they can’t in the future. Without a Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) your family may need to go to Court. This can cause lots of hassle, delay, and expense. 

There are 2 types of Lasting Power of Attorney; finances & property matters and decisions about health and care. 

Why should you do it now? 

  • 1 in 3 of us will suffer dementia
  • Many of us will retain mental capacity, but will physically struggle to manage our affairs at some point in our life
  • Being married or asking your chosen person to act for you is not enough – you need to legally give them the power to help you
  • If you leave making your Power of Attorney until you need it, it will be too late.


Carers Centre Partners 

The Carers Centre Tower Hamlets is pleased to work in partnership with respected Law firms to provide carers with affordable support with LPA.  

 Jones Whyte are a Glasgow based multi award winning Solicitor firm and the reigning Law Firm of the Year 2021 

  • They prepare thousands of Powers of Attorney every year 
  • Have partnerships with many major national charities
  • They offer competitive Power of Attorney fees £349 + vat

Carers Centre staff can refer you, or you can contact them yourself on 0330 175 1234 or email appointments@joneswhyte.co.uk 

You can find our more about Jones Whyte here Power of Attorney – Solicitors Glasgow | Jones Whyte Law 


Duncan Lewis Solicitors – “We believe in access to justice for the most vulnerable in society and do everything we can to ensure legal advice and support is available for those who need it most”.  

Duncan Lewis Solicitors are a national firm with offices locally. 

  • They prepare thousands of Powers of Attorney every year
  • They are available for face-to-face appointments at their local office (1 Kingsland High Street, Dalston, Hackney, London, E8 2JS) or surgeries at the Carers Centre if requested 
  • They offer competitive Power of Attorney fees £350 + vat


Carers Centre staff can refer you, contact us on 0207 790 1765 or at enquiries@ccth.org.uk 

You can find out more about Duncan Lewis here https://www.duncanlewis.co.uk 

 Most solicitor firms support with LPA and carers are under no obligation to use either firm listed above and are free to seek support from any firm they choose. 


What is I do not want to pay for support with LPA? 

We also provide workshops and information for those who want to set up an LPA themselves, many people set up LPA without legal support. You can check our Calendar or give us a call for updates on our latest workshops. 

You can also see the information links below for information. 

Different ways to manage someone’s affairs  

Make, register or end LPA 

Call us on 0207 790 1765 or email enquiries@ccth.org.uk to find out more about LPA. 


A carers guide to home fire safety

A new video resource has been launched on the London Fire Brigade website to help carers learn how to keep people that receive care safe from fire.

Sadly, around one third of those here who die or are severely injured by fire are in receipt of some form of care or support. If you are a formal (domiciliary care worker, support worker or clinician) or informal carer (family member, friend or neighbour) and are caring for someone in their own home, this new resource will help you identify fire risks and show you what you can do to reduce them. There is also more information available on the website around fire safety and prevention.

Watch the video >




1) Plan Your Route

Make sure you plan your route ahead of time. If you are walking in an area you are not familiar with, this can help keep you from getting lost. You will be able to walk with confidence. If you do get lost, don’t wander aimlessly, find a gas station, supermarket, or fast-food restaurant where you can ask for directions.

2) Make Sure Someone Else Knows Your Plans

Don’t go out when it is dark without telling someone, even if you are just taking the dogs out for a walk around your neighbourhood or walking home from a friend’s house nearby. It may seem paranoid, but in fact, knowing someone knows where you are can be reassuring and help you feel safe. If you fall and hurt yourself or run into trouble, and someone knows where you are, they can send help if you don’t arrive at your destination on time.

3) Always Carry Your Phone with You

Always carry your phone, but not for music or to make social calls as your walk. Your phone can be a lifeline if you see something suspicious or worse if something happens to you. Download a safety app on your phone, so you’ll be able to discreetly alert the authorities if you feel threatened or see something suspicious.

4) Avoid Suspicious People and Areas

Areas that are dark, deserted, or out-of-the-way, such as an alley or a parking lot, can be riskier than a well-lit area full of people. Stick to busy, lighted paths, to minimize the risks. Also, walk mainly in familiar places where you are known. That way, if you feel like a suspicious person is following you, you can always duck into a store you know or knock on a neighbour’s door. Avoid empty streets and pathways with thick shrubbery.

5) Keep Your Hands Free

Except for a flashlight and one of the items discussed below, keep your hands free. If you are carrying anything, put it all in one bag or backpack. This will make it easier for you to react if you notice someone following you. In a dangerous situation, carrying too many bags can keep you from moving as quickly as you can if your hands are free or if you only have one bag.

6) Carry a Non-Violent Deterrent

In addition to a flashlight,  A whistle will help you alert others and call them to aid you if something is wrong. The loud noise may put off attackers, and they’ll move on to find someone else. Mace or pepper spray can give you enough time to evade a potential attacker, and in a pinch, a flashlight can be used as a weapon. Make sure you know how to use the mace or pepper spray to get its full effect.

7) Wear Reflective Clothing to Prevent Accidents

When it comes to personal safety, it’s not just about suspicious people. Areas with low visibility can be prone to accidents. Reflective clothing allows bikers and cars to see you as you walk along. A flashlight or headlight can also help drivers see you if there are dark stretches of road on your route.

8) Take a Self-Defence Class

When fighting off something as an assault, the element of surprise can work in your favour. If you regularly walk alone, take a self-defence class. You don’t have to become a black belt. In fact, it’s probably better to learn something like Krav Maga, which has been popular for self-defence. The idea is to disable your attacker enough for you to get to safety, and a class focused on self-defence will help give you those survival skills.

9) Remove Any Distractions

Keep your phone in your hand in case you need to hit the panic button on your safety app, but don’t let it distract you. When walking alone at night for exercise, music can be motivating and energizing but also distracting. You may not hear someone driving or walking up behind you. Avoid wearing headphones or talking on your phone as you walk.

10) Trust Your Gut

When walking alone at night, trust your gut. If you feel like an area or situation may be dangerous, don’t wait around to find out. Stop and scan your surroundings if you think someone is following you. If you are being followed, walk as quickly as you can to a well-lit public place. You can wait until you feel safe, or call a friend, a taxi, or an Uber to help you get safely get home at night.

Following these personal safety tips will help keep you stay safe when walking alone. Always be aware of where you are and alert to suspicious activity.



Get in touch

The Carers Centre
21 Brayford Square
London, E1 0SG

020 7790 1765


Opening hours

Monday - Friday – 9.30am – 5pm
Saturday and Sunday – Closed

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