Inspire: Culture, Learning and Libraries become Carer Friendly


Inspire: Culture, Learning and Libraries delivers culture, learning and libraries on behalf of Nottinghamshire County Council.

The Community Engagement Team at Nottinghamshire Carers Association (NCA) organised and delivered carer awareness training to over 180 library staff and also to more than 20 key Adult Learning staff & tutors online. That's staff across all Inspire Libraries & Inspire Adult Learning areas in Nottinghamshire, who are now more Carer aware, and able to support & signpost Carers in a more proactive & understanding way.

 Staff said they now feel:

‘More aware of how we can help carers’, ‘A lot more aware of the pressures on carers’ ‘Able to proactively include carers’ and ‘To think more about how we can make the library accessible and a safe space for carers and people with hidden disabilities’ 

The adult learning staff have a range of useful information to hand for carers they meet, and on display across the County. The libraries have also shaped and improved their services to make them more accessible to Carers, with resources put in place to support Carers across all libraries and learning.  This includes:


-          Flexibility with charges if books become overdue.

-          Links to Nottinghamshire Carers and TuVida have been added onto the Inspire website under Health Information

-          The ‘Reading Well’ collections contain books of interest to Carers.

-          Carer information Bookmarks distributed through their Wellbeing bags.

-          And many others…. Please ask at your local Inspire Library.

 Quote from Fiona Littlewood (Principal Librarian at Inspire: Culture, Learning & Libraries):  

“For many of our staff and customers, this will be their lived experience, but we all benefit from having a deeper understanding of the issues involved. This knowledge will help us to provide a better and more tailored service to our communities. We look forward to exploring ways in which we can strengthen this partnership in the weeks and months to come” 

Inspire are also involved with our Carers Space project and have spoken to Carers and professionals at online Carer support events. They are also working with our Carers in Employment Worker to look at becoming a Carer Friendly Employer, supporting their own employees who are Carers. 

We are pleased to announce that they have also been awarded the NCA ‘Carer Friendly Organisation Quality Mark’ for 2022-23, for their continued commitment to help support Carers.

Inspire have truly been an inspiration!

Fiona Littlewood with Bookmarks 22 8 22.jpg (854 KB)

Fiona Littlewood (Principal Librarian at Inspire: Culture, Learning & Libraries)

 NCA QM Presentation - Inspire 22 Aug 2022.jpg (9.39 MB)

Diane Naylor – NCA Community Engagement Worker

Peter Gaw – INSPIRE Chief Executive Officer

Fiona Littlewood – INSPIRE Principal Librarian: Resources, Employability and Health

Ian Bond – INSPIRE Learning Director

Paige Miles – NCA Community Engagement Worker