About the video
This video was part of our campaign to give carers a break from their responsibilities. A third of family carers of disabled people don’t receive any support to take a break from caring.
The video begins with a woman with blue eyes and long dark hair speaking off camera. She is sat in her living room. Her name is Lowri.
Lowri enters her daughter’s room. Her daughter’s name is Mia. Mia is asleep in a bed which has a supportive railing across it. Lowri opens the curtains and lowers the railing, getting Mia ready for the day.
Lowri: I think you need support. Like every person would need support if they are caring for someone, especially 24 seven. You do need to break. You do need some sort of sanity.
Mia is sitting in a wheelchair. She is a young girl with blond hair and blue eyes. Lowri is standing next to her, smiling whilst holding up colourful fibre-optic lights. Mia looks up at Lowri, making eye contact.
Mia sits on Lowri’s lap, and they share a hug on the sofa.
Lowri: Mia is non-verbal but she does show off a lot of love. She really speaks through her eyes and we do have a really special bond.
Mia is sat in her wheelchair in the kitchen. Lowri screws in Mia’s tube, getting ready for her feed.
Lowri: When Mia became nil by mouth and was tube fed, I quit working so I could become her full time carer.
We are now in Mia’s room. Lowri is caring for Mia by drying her hair after a bath, preparing her feed again, dressing her, carrying Mia up the stairs, and flushing Mia’s feeding tube.
Lowri: From the moment she wakes up to the moment she goes to bed I feed her, dress her, carry her around everywhere, give her a medication, but it doesn’t really stop.
Lowri puts Mia to bed and closes the bedroom blinds. Lowri goes to bed, her face illuminated by Mia’s monitor. We hear a cry and Lowri opens her eyes to check the monitor.
Lowri: When she does go to bed, she does have insomnia. So I’ve always got to be alert at night listening out for her.
It’s daytime. Lowri is working through her daily tasks. She is sitting on the stairs going through applications, she brings in the shopping, stocks up Mia’s feed and checks Mia’s feeding tube inventory.
Lowri: When I do get a break, when she’s at school, two days a week, I’m always catching up on life admin, doing bits that I can’t do with Mia, you know, food shop for popping to the chemist, making sure that she’s stocked up on a feed.
Lowri picks Mia up from school. She unstraps Mia from her wheelchair, lifts Mia into the car and lifts the wheelchair into the boot of the car.
Lowri: The time goes so quickly and before I know it I’ve got to pick her up again, which is a long and lengthy process in itself.
Lowri is looking down at Mia, smiling affectionately.
Lowri is finally taking a short break. She stands in the kitchen and looks out the window.
Lowri: True respite would mean, you know, a night or like a small break, a couple of nights away where Mia is looked after by someone that can care for properly and I can just spend those nights having a full night’s sleep and not having to be woken up because we need time to almost recuperate and gain energy again.
Lowri is back with Mia. They are in the living room using an eye gaze machine. Lowri holds Mia’s hand and gently strokes it.
Lowri: While waiting for support or respite, I’ve just got to get on with it and make her the happiest I can, and give her the best care possible.
The screen fades to white. Purple text appears on screen which reads
Voiceover: 1 in 5 family carers can’t remember the last time they had a break. Join us in calling for more support for carers. Sense.org.uk/GiveCarersABreak.
Two dots appear. Orange on the left and purple on the right. The dots spin around the screen then comes together in the centre, forming two hands with the letter S in the middle. This is the Sense logo. Text appears below the logo.
Voiceover: Sense. No one left out of life. Sense.org.uk