AN 'under-pressure' charity which supports thousands of unpaid carers has warned it faces further challenges in the year ahead.

Over the last year, Northwich-based Cheshire and Warrington Carers Trust has faced 'significant' financial pressures, leaving it trying to deliver more with less.

Despite this, the charity's staff and volunteers have still managed to directly support more than 3,300 carers, while providing many more with information through its newsletters, blogs and social media.

But, speaking at its AGM, the trust's leaders reported the immediate future remains a challenging one.

Helen Sumner, chairwoman of the board of trustees, said: "This was our 29th year of operation.

"While we continue with our aims to identify and be accessible to carers, to help people to achieve their potential, and promote health and wellbeing, doing so within a fixed or reducing funding context remains challenging.”

The Carers Trust provides a wide range of support services, most of which are delivered directly to individual carers in need of help.

The support is frequently in the form of advice and guidance but can, in critical situations, also be financial support or the provision of household equipment, and carer breaks.

David Harvey, the charity's CEO, added one of the challenges its faces is having to bid for contracts due for renewal.

He said: "Throughout the last year we’ve been developing new opportunities for carers to access our services that we’ll be developing and delivering further over the next year.

"We’ll be looking, and bidding for, new funding opportunities to support these and other initiatives."

The trust has recently become one of only five carers organisations in the country to be awarded the Carers Confident Award, which recognises the support it gives to working carers including those within the trust itself.

It is now working hard to achieve the Trusted Charity Standard, which it hopes will be secured in 2024, the trust's 30th year of operation.

To learn more about the trust’s work, there is an opportunity to meet carers, staff and trustees, and also to snap up a festive bargain, at a Festive Pop-Up Charity Shop on Saturday, December 2.

The pop-up shop will take place between 10am and 12pm at 146 London Road, Northwich, CW9 5HH.

For more information, contact the trust on or telephone 0300 1020 008.