THE pace of life these days means most people live extremely busy lives, balancing demanding job roles with making the most of spare time and taking up the myriad of leisure activities now available in this modern world.

It can be a challenging balancing act at times. But spare a thought for the hundreds of individuals across South Lakeland to whom the concept of ‘spare time’ is difficult to conceive.

These are people whose lives are dominated by looking after family and loved-ones who need almost constant attention due to illness, a condition or disability.

These carers might be looking after a parent, partner, child, relative, friend or neighbour. Their work is unpaid and they do it because they care deeply for the person they help, wanting them to enjoy the best possible life under often very trying circumstances.

They do not expect thanks or payment - that is simply the role that life had handed them.

But at times it must be trying, frustrating and emotionally draining. Sometimes they are forced to give up their income, education or employment prospects, or their pension rights, to care for someone. Others attempt to juggle jobs with their caring responsibilities.

South Lakeland Carers, a local charity, supports around 1,250 unpaid carers, aged from just six to 96.

We believe that these unsung heroes need a helping hand and that’s why The Westmorland Gazette launched Give Them A Break in September. It aims to raise £20,000 to pay for up to 200 carers - and in some cares the cared-for person - to have a much-needed one-night break at a hotel hotel, including dinner and breakfast. It’s a chance for them to recharge their batteries, have a bit of ‘me time’ and be better prepared to return to their caring role afterwards.

The campaign started well but donations have slowed in recent weeks.

We urge readers to stop for a moment and think about the amazing work that carers carry out and then dig deep and donate to the fund-raising campaign. No-one knows when someone might fall ill and need extra help - or be called on to care for that person.

Please do what you can can to support the campaign and these dedicated carers - please print off the coupon above and send it with your cheque to Mike Addison, Newsroom, The Westmorland Gazette, 1 Wainwright's Yard, Kendal, Cumbria, LA9 7JB. You can also donate at