A CAMPAIGN has been launched by a Bolton MP to support the work of unpaid carers across the borough and beyond.

Bolton South East MP Yasmin Qureshi says knows only too well the demands of being a carer.

The politician has been a full-time and part-time carer for the past 10 years for her mother and brother.

Now she is supporting the work of Carefree, a charity founded five years ago by two brothers which is designed to offer respites for people who look after close family members unpaid.

Ms Qureshi said: "Over the past 10 years I have been and am an unpaid carer. And I know how difficult balancing work, a social life, and unpaid care can be.

"Looking after my mum and later my brother was and is incredibly tough. I also know how tiring it is – there are times when I feel like I am caught in quicksand.”

“Carefree’s offering provides a respite from this quicksand – and allows unpaid carers to take a break, free of charge.”

“The work unpaid carers do is often not reported. Without them we would be in an even graver situation with respect to adult social care. Please, if you are an unpaid carer reading this, sign up to Carefree’s service and claim your break.”

The charity can offer hotel breaks for those affected but supporters are also eager to highlight the work unpaid carers do.

Charity officials have teamed up with five major hotel chains and partnered with 70 councils, support agencies, and care agencies as part of their drive.

An estimated £50bn to £100bn is pumped into the care sector by unpaid carers every year. Forty per cent of these carers are believed to have not had a break themselves in more than five years, worsening their own mental health and wellbeing.

Charlotte Newman, Carefree's chief executive, believes that designing effective solutions for social care and carers should be a society-wide effort.

She added: "Being able to rest is an essential part of what it means to be human. Only through the collective commitment of people, partnerships and technology working together can we build a truly sustainable, national way for carers in need of a break to access time off."