WITH national carers week starting on Monday and concern mounting about the UK's army of unpaid carers, councils in Dorset are keen to flag up their initiative to help.

The Carers Card was introduced two years ago and aims to recognise the hard work of unpaid carers across the county of Dorset. The card enables them to obtain discounts with businesses that have signed up to the scheme, which is funded by Dorset County Council, Bournemouth Borough Council, The Borough of Poole and Dorset Clinical Commissioning Group.

Since its launch Carers Card has acquired more than 240 business signings and has over 7,000 unpaid carers currently entitled to discounts across the county.

Spokeswoman Julie England said: "The Carers Card is even more relevant today as the Government Action Plan for Carers for 2018-2020 showed that 34 per cent of carers who completed the survey had to reduce their working hours and 47 per cent had to give up work. Our Dorset councils are very forward thinking with this card and Carers UK are urging other councils across the country to follow suit."

The scheme is now appealing for more businesses to join. To obtain a card contact julie@mycarerscard.co.uk or telephone 01202 764778.