UNPAID carers in Wirral will be among 250 across Merseyside treated to afternoon tea this week as part of a 'thank you' for their efforts during the pandemic.

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service has teamed up with Liverpool FC, Age UK Wirral, all five Merseyside local authorities and a number of other organisations to recognise the commitment and sacrifice made by unpaid carers as part of their 'Care for the Carers' campaign.

The afternoon teas will be prepared by LFC before being delivered to various addresses by volunteers and MFRS fire crews to carers in Knowsley, Liverpool, Sefton, St Helens and Wirral on Wednesday afternoon.

The project, coinciding with National Carers Week, follows a similar initiative in December which saw MFRS crews and volunteers deliver traditional Christmas day lunch to around 100 older people in Wirral.

Nick McCormack, station manager at MFRS, who will be one of over 60 volunteers delivering afternoon teas on the day, said: "We know that the last 15 months has been extremely difficult for everyone - we have all had to make sacrifices in order to keep those around us safe.

"Unfortunately there are many members of our community who simply cannot look after themselves and so rely on carers to help them on a daily basis.

"Many of these people are unpaid carers and are often family members - sometimes children - of those who are in need of support.

"The commitment and bravery of these people is remarkable and whilst we know that the afternoon tea is in no way comparable to the efforts they have shown throughout the pandemic, we hope it will bring a little cheer to their day and offer them a little respite."

The project would not be possible without the support of LFC, whose community team Red Neighbours will be preparing the afternoon teas, and Age UK Wirral who have worked with counterparts in other Merseyside districts to identify those in receipt of delivery.

Forbes Duff, senior manager, from LFC's Red Neighbours charity, said: "There are so many extraordinary carers in our local communities looking after friends and family members, many of whom do so without respite or financial support.

"Their selflessness and commitment is amazing and it makes such a big difference to the people they support.

"We want to thank them for all that they do with a small act of kindness, which we hope will acknowledge their dedication and the important work they do, and put a smile on their faces.”

Jenny Paton, deputy chief executive Age UK Wirral, said: "We are delighted to be working with MFRS and LFC to ensure that our carers know we appreciate how hard the last year has been.

"The afternoon teas will be a real treat for their unpaid carers who spend all their time looking after their loved one and putting their needs first.

"It gives us the opportunity to show how much we appreciate and care about them, and lets them know they can come to us for support of they need it."