CARERS in Hampshire are being urged to take advantage of a vital lifeline after shocking figures reveal more than a third of carers didn’t get any time off last year.

Disability charity Vitalise were astonished to find that so many carers had been unable to switch off over the last 12 months, with 58 per cent of those surveyed admitting a lack of respite left them depressed.

So the charity, which runs a respite centre in Southampton, is offering a funding lifeline to those in the most desperate need of respite as it launches its new range of breaks for the disabled in 2014.

From festivals to swimming and sailing, Vitalise, which runs Netley Waterside House respite centre, has lots to offer the physically disabled, while their carer get a much needed break.

In addition to subsidising all of its breaks through its own fundraising efforts to make them as affordable as possible to all, Vitalise will be also offering additional discretionary funding throughout 2014, enabling people in particular financial hardship to take breaks.

The charity’s Joan Brander Memorial Fund, set up in memory of the charity’s founder, is used every year for this purpose and the charity is urging those who think they might be eligible to come forward.

The aim of Vitalise’s breaks, which have been running for 50 years, is to improve the quality of life of people affected by disability through socially inclusive programmes of activity.

For more details call 0303 303 0145.