Carers Week 2022: Making caring visible, valued and supported

MDUK is taking a moment this Carers Week 2022 to celebrate all the carers in our community who work tirelessly and often without recognition.

Carers’ work goes unpaid, often done silently in addition to their paid “day-job” and multiple other roles. They offer huge amounts of physical, emotional and sometimes financial support, and they are often parents, siblings or partners too. So many carers within the MDUK community go above and beyond to fiercely campaign, advocate, fundraise and raise awareness of muscle-wasting conditions alongside their other responsibilities, and we couldn’t be more grateful. Their contribution is a cornerstone to our community, and we want to show our gratitude.

This year’s Carers Week theme is ‘making caring visible, valued and supported.’ At MDUK, we really appreciate all of the work that carers do for both their loved ones and the wider muscle-wasting community.

Annually, we celebrate our President’s Awards Carer of the Year and 2022 saw us shout about Shelley Simmonds. Shelley, whose nine-year-old son, Fraser, lives with Duchenne muscular dystrophy, cares for her son and family while also advocating for a more inclusive society. She runs the Fraser and Friends Facebook page, which shares regular blog posts about their experiences advocating for inclusion, accessibility, independence and equality to raise awareness and create a community.

When given the award, Shelly shared how she wanted to do everything to “give Fraser the best, positive life that he can possibly have; he deserves to have an equal life to anyone else.” Shelley’s contribution, like the work of so many carers, is monumental and much needed. Carers provide key support all year round, but this week we say an extra special, big thank you to every single one for everything they do.

If you are caring for someone who has a muscle-wasting condition, having access to the right information and support can help to make all the difference. Whether you need some practical information about welfare benefits or would like to speak to one of our friendly peer support volunteers who can understand what you might be going through, the Information, Advocacy and Care Team at Muscular Dystrophy UK can help.

Our team are here for you with a warm, listening ear and will do their best to make sure you have the information you need. You can speak to our team by contacting our helpline on 0800 652 6352 or by emailing