The leading hotel group is supporting the project by donating bed and breakfast stays at all eight hotels in its portfolio, 50 family passes to Action Glen Adventure Park at Crieff Hydro Hotel and a group two-hour Gin School experience at 1881 Distillery in Peebles.
Since June 2021, over 100 unpaid carers have visited Crieff Hydro Family of Hotels for some much-needed fun and recuperation as part of the programme.
One of the unpaid carers, who took a short break from her caring role with her family, has praised the organisations who made it happen.
Vanya Zaczek is an unpaid carer for an older family member and had the chance to enjoy family time at Action Glen at Crieff Hydro Hotel.
Vanya said: “I was delighted when I was offered this short day break - I juggle single parenting as well as my caring role, so it allowed me the quality time to not only focus solely on my children, but also make special and fun memories with them. We decided to make it a celebration for my son’s sixth birthday, which made it that extra bit special.
“Short breaks like these are so valuable to unpaid carers like myself – it’s so important we prioritise self-care, and initiatives like these mean we can slow down and make the time for ourselves. My local carers organisation PKAVS are a Respitality partner, and they arranged the voucher on my behalf, so it meant I didn’t have to even worry about arranging anything, making it even more of a treat.
“We cannot thank everyone involved enough - it allowed us to have some very precious and quality family time together, and made our son's sixth birthday one to remember.”
Nic Oldham, Head of Customer and Commercial at Crieff Hydro Family of Hotels, said: “We were delighted to partner with Respitality and feedback like this demonstrates the difference this initiative can make to the unpaid carers it supports by offering the opportunity of some quality family time or a chance to unwind and relax at one of our hotels.
“Unpaid carers so often go unrecognised for the support and care they give to others but it is important they can take time to care for themselves too. We would encourage others in the hospitality industry to get behind this fantastic cause.”
Respitality provides a welcomed short break from routine for unpaid carers which has proven to be vital for both their physical and mental health and wellbeing. Coordinated by Shared Care Scotland since 2014, the Respitality initiative facilitates complimentary leisure breaks for unpaid carers. The initiative sees kind and passionate businesses in the hospitality, leisure and tourism sector donate breaks, which are then passed onto unpaid carers by carers’ organisations across Scotland.
Funded by the Scottish Government and supported by local businesses, the initiative currently operates in 19 local authority areas in Scotland. Since launching in Scotland, Respitality has facilitated breaks for over 3000 carers with the support of over 350 businesses.