Ageing, Disability & Home Care

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NSW Carers Action Plan Evaluation Report

The NSW Carers Action Plan 2007 - 2012 (CAP) (PDF) was the NSW Government's commitment to the 850,000 carers in NSW who provide unpaid support to people who need it because of disability, mental illness, dementia, frail age or drug and alcohol abuse.

The NSW Department of Family and Community Services (FACS) engaged The Nous Group to undertake an in-depth evaluation of the CAP in 2012. The evaluation involved extensive consultation with carers and key stakeholders.  The evaluation found that services for carers have improved since 2007 and that the CAP had contributed to this improvement

The NSW Carers Action Plan Evaluation Report (PDF) outlined seven key recommendations for the NSW Government:

  1. The NSW Government should develop a "Carers Action Plan 2" to complement the Carers (Recognition) Act 2010.
  2. The NSW Government should develop a stronger evidence base to inform future initiatives.
  3. The NSW Government should develop and implement initiatives to assist carers to combine caring and work.
  4. The NSW Government should maintain a focus on the specific needs of different groups of carers such as young carers, ageing carers, culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) carers and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers and further strengthen current initiatives in place to assist these groups. Greater emphasis should also be placed on identifying and supporting carers in rural and regional areas.
  5. The NSW Government should:
    a) Carry out ongoing promotion to reach carers among the general community and by service providers - i.e. in the community facilities they typically visit (including GP and other health services, libraries, schools, local government facilities) and in the specialist services they, and the person they care for, use.
    b) further the use of targeted promotion to raise awareness by CALD and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander carers of carer support and services, and
    c) continue to support annual Carers Week activities.
  6. The NSW Government should maintain and expand mechanisms to ensure the impact on carers is considered in current and future government policy reform.
  7. The NSW Government should:
    a) commence action on a number of high level priorities to emerge from this evaluation; and
    b) ensure the initiatives in "Carers Action Plan 2" reflect a number of further priorities to emerge from this evaluation

The Executive Summary of the NSW Carers Action Plan Evaluation Report (PDF) includes a response from FACS to each of these recommendations.

The Office for Carers in FACS is leading the follow-up work from the evaluation. This includes responding to a key recommendation of the evaluation and developing a new whole of government strategy to drive whole of government support for carers.

For more information including requests for the appendices and assistance with accessing the document, please contact Helen.McFarlane@facs.nsw.gov.au or on 9377 6000.

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