Impala teams up with charity Carefree to provide vacant hotel rooms for unpaid carers

Impala teams up with charity Carefree to provide vacant hotel rooms for unpaid carers

The digital distribution platform won the Third Sector Business Charity Awards' 2022 innovation accolade for its work with the charity

Digital distribution marketplace Impala is making vacant hotel rooms and properties available to a charity that provides respite breaks to unpaid carers.

The partnership with Carefree was highlighted last week during Carers’ Week in the UK and scooped the Best Digital Innovation Award at the 2022 Third Sector Business Charity Awards on May 19.

Carefree has helped over 1,000 unpaid carers take a break by working with hotel operators to use vacant rooms.  They work with hotels, hospitality and community partners to donate accommodation and provide carers with access to breaks in hotels and holiday cottages throughout the UK.

The charity estimates there are currently seven million unpaid carers working in the UK and 74% of care-workers say they have been facing burnout since the pandemic.

Unpaid carers provide 80% of home care and Carefree says their situation means 64% are unable to take any breaks at all.

Carefree has partnered with travel technology company Impala to provide vacant hotel capacity at partner hotels across the UK to offer free stays to carers up to 60 days ahead

This allows time to organise interim care, with Carefree helping carers to arrange cover where necessary. 

Since Nov 2021, 81 hotels across the UK have agreed to release around 2,000 rooms per month, with 950 hotel nights booked by carers so far. 

Carefree says the impact has been immediate, with 89% reporting that they couldn’t have taken a break without the initiative and 95% seeing an improvement in their wellbeing.