Find contact details of organisations that provide care, support and/or information for people with dementia, their carers and loved ones.

Who is a carer?

A carer is anybody who provides care for someone who needs help because of an illness or disability. They might be a partner, relative, friend or neighbour, known as informal carers or paid professionals known as formal carers.

Many carers feel they are doing what anyone else would in the same situation by being there for their relative or friend.

The care they give is usually unpaid, although they may be eligible for certain benefits.

Anyone of any age can become an informal carer, and there is not always a clear-cut point when someone becomes another person’s carer.

Formal carers such as care workers, support workers and personal assistants are different from unpaid carers. They are people who are paid for a specific service. This might be for domestic tasks like cleaning or shopping, or help with personal care, such as washing, dressing, or managing medication.

Caring for someone with dementia

People who provide unpaid care or support for someone with dementia may experience a range of different feelings.

Caring for someone can be rewarding. You may be supporting someone you love very much and may gain new skills and build closer relationships in the process.

But caring can also be challenging. At times it may be physically and mentally exhausting, and the needs of a person with dementia will usually increase over time.

It’s important that carers access support for themselves and those they care for when they need it and know that they are not alone.

There is a range of support available for people affected by dementia, including carers.

Often people affected by dementia have many questions, worries and concerns. The organisations listed on this page can help to answer those questions as well as provide support and information.

Finding local support

Your GP surgery and local council should be able to help you find local sources of support.

As well as medical and social care support, there may be other helpful services in your area, such as befriending services, memory cafés, and social and peer support groups.

National and local charities can provide advice and signpost you to other organisations that can help.

Many of the organisations on this page will also be able to help you find local contacts for services available in your area.

Help from your local council, authority or trust

In England, your local council has a duty under the Care Act (2014) to carry out, when requested, a care needs assessment for anyone with care and support needs.

There is also a carer’s assessment that assesses the needs of carers. These are usually done at the person’s home, face to face. You can request an assessment from your local council’s Adult Social Services Team for yourself or for someone else by phone, in writing or online.

In Scotland and Wales, contact your local council's Social Services office.

In Northern Ireland, contact your local Health and Social Care Trust.

A GP or hospital doctor can also arrange an assessment for you.

 

The assessments will find out if someone is eligible and which care and support services they need. Support may include:

  • help in the home
  • adaptations and equipment
  • help with personal care
  • access to day centres
  • residential or respite/replacement care.

After a care needs assessment, a care plan should be agreed and written up. You can request a copy of your care plan in writing.

The local council has a duty to meet a person’s needs when they are eligible, however, they can charge for services.

A financial assessment is used to determine whether charges are made or not. The council should provide a breakdown of how they calculate any costs.

Find your local social services department number in the phone book or online. The website also has information on topics such as benefits, tax and pensions.

Find details of GP surgeries and hospitals in your area.

Dementia-specific organisations

Sources of support for people with specific forms of dementia

Emotional support and mental health

Organisations for carers

The organisations in this section offer help and advice on finding and paying for care, legal and financial information about care and support for carers, including replacement care (respite care).

There are a number of websites providing help and advice for young carers. These include:

Organisations for older people

Accommodation, housing and care homes

Help finding care providers

There are a large number of care providers. Some agencies will offer care through the local council, as well as privately.

A good place to start looking for services is the Care Quality Commission. They are the regulator for health and social care services in England. There are equivalent regulators in the other countries of the UK.

They publish reports on care homes and care services in the home (domiciliary care) that highlight the quality of care provided. You can search for local care services on their websites.

Some solicitors provide free information on their websites about mental capacity and Lasting Power of Attorney.

For example, Wright Hassall has produced a ‘Legal guide to dealing with dementia‘ that you may find useful.

There are also some helpful resources about making a will, inheritance tax, planning and paying for care and Lasting Power of Attorney here.

Other useful contacts

Support for people affected by dementia

This booklet is for people affected by dementia, including family, friends and carers. Its lists organisations offering help, advice, information and support.

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This information was written in February 2024 and is due for review in July 2026. It was written by Alzheimer's Research UK's Information Services team with input from lay and expert reviewers. Please contact us if you would like a version with references.

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