Despite being 94, The Queen is still trying to keep up with the times: joining her first video call with her daughter, Princess Anne.
The Monarch and Princess Royal spoke to carers, who are supported by The Carers Trust, of which Anne is President, to mark Carers’ Week. For 2020, the theme is ‘Making Carers Visible’.
One participant spoke of their life-long role as a carer: “I have been a carer, officially really, since I was eight.
“I only recognised it when I was 11 or 12. It takes a while for any carer to recognise they are a carer.”
During the pandemic and lockdown, many more people have become carers, unable to have the services of another that helps a family member or friend.
One in ten Brits provide unpaid care to someone, making some seven million carers across the UK.
In 1991, at the initiative of Princess Anne, The Princess Royal Trust for Carers was formed, to offer support to those who look after someone in their life.
A merger with Crossroads Care in 2012 created the Carers Trust as it is today.
Another spoke of how the role can overwhelm you with all its different facets: “Psychiatrist, a nurse, a sociologist…you put on all these different hats and then you can lose your sense of self as well.”
“It was interesting listening to all your tales and stories and I am very impressed by what you have achieved already,” The Queen said.
“I am very glad to have been able to join you today.”
Her Majesty was speaking from the Oak Room at Windsor Castle, where she has spent the lockdown with Prince Philip, who celebrated his 99th birthday yesterday. A new photo of the couple was released to mark the occasion.
The Princess Royal, 70, added: “I think we all recognise that we know carers somewhere. Maybe we have stopped and wondered how on earth we can help.”
For Carers Week 2020, the charity has asked unpaid carers ‘be at the centre of social care thinking’, and for their contribution to be recognised, and for the impact on them, financial or otherwise, to be eased’.
Anne has also sent a solo thank you message to carers: “If you are an unpaid family carer, thank you so much for everything you do for those who cannot care for themselves,” she said.
“This Carers Week, and always, please know that your role is a vital one; one to be highlighted and celebrated, and one that should never be forgotten.”
See the call below:
— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) June 11, 2020