Caring for an older relative is often difficult but the team at River Cottage aim to make life a little easier.
The unique service is the only respite care centre of its kind in the Macarthur region.
It provides a home away from home for many residents over the age of 65 and gives dedicated carers some much-needed peace of mind.
Client care coordinator Michelle Lewis said River Cottage, located on the grounds of Carrington Care, offered short term respite stays for up to five nights for elderly people.
The five night stay provides some relief for carers who may be worried about leaving their loved one with a stranger.
“The decision for a carer to accept a period of respite can often be associated with feelings of guilt,” Ms Lewis said.
“The thought of leaving the person that you care for with a stranger is often too overwhelming.
“A short stay can be enough to relieve those feelings and acknowledge the benefits of all types of respite.
“Carrington staff provide 24-hour care and recipients are provided with all meals and have access to a range of activities that are available on site at Carrington,”
Ms Lewis said respite time was vital for carers to keep them happy and healthy.
“[While] caring for someone is a valuable and rewarding experience, it can also be stressful and leave a carer feeling emotionally and physically tired,” she said.
“A carer should take regular breaks known as respite.
“A break can give a carer time to do everyday activities and help a carer deal with stress and recharge.
“Research evidence suggests that time away from caring duties can make a carer happier, healthier and better able to deal with the demands of caring.”
Ms Lewis said Carrington established the cottage to acknowledge the importance of carers and their contribution to the community.
However she said the service was not widely known about.
”River Cottage is very popular with the Carrington community, [but] there are many carers within the wider community that are not aware such a great service is available to them,” Ms Lewis said.
“To be eligible for Respite at River Cottage the care recipient will need to be registered with My Aged Care.
“The program is funded by Commonwealth Home Support Program.”
For more information, contact Carrington Customer Service Team on 1300 590 590 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.