Birmingham based Forward Carers is committed to creating Carer Friendly Communities. This Community Interest Company is on a mission to encourage organisations, businesses, health care trusts and individuals to recognise family carers and take practical steps to make a positive difference to the lives of unpaid carers. It is estimated that more than 40,000 children and adults become unpaid carers in Birmingham every year by supporting a family member or friend who is frail, has a serious illness, disability or addiction.

Following the success of Forward Carers Carer Friendly Business Awards last November, a number of organisations and businesses have realised the value in recognising and acknowledging unpaid Carers.

So far, eight not-for-profits including Headway Birmingham and Solihull, Age Concern Birmingham and Birmingham Mind have signed up to be part of a Carer Friendly Community. University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust and two medical centres have shown the same commitment as well as Winterbourne House and Gardens and Carer Friendly Business Award winners South and City College Birmingham and solicitors Nicholls Brimble Bhol.

By joining Forward Carers Carer Friendly Communities initiative, businesses can benefit from free advertising, attract more customers and increase sales by making small changes to becoming Carer Friendly. What’s more, organisations who offer flexible working patterns to employed family carers will notice an increase in productivity and staff retention.

Simon Fenton, CEO of Forward Carers said: “We are all facing challenging times, we want to help ensure that organisations and businesses are economically stable, help ease the stress of being a carer and together create carer friendly communities.”

To find out more about Carer Friendly Communities and how others are supporting their caring workforce, organisations and businesses can attend Forward Carers networking event on 25 February from 12.30 till 1.30pm. There will be an opportunity to network with others whilst gaining valuable insight on how small changes can improve the health and wellbeing of your staff. To join this free event, register here:

Alternatively, for further information visit or email [email protected].