FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
London & New York, 1 December 2020
UK charity tech startup, Carefree, has garnered international attention and won a globally recognised accolade for its accessible solution to get unpaid carers the short break they urgently need.
The Skift IDEA Awards, sponsored by Accor Hotels, recognises companies defining the future of travel and honours inspiring work from brands, agencies, and tech providers creating better ways to travel. “With hundreds of entries across 14 categories, this year’s Skift IDEA Awards winners represent the innovations, design, and experiences defining the future of travel." Matt Heidkamp, Creative Strategy Director, Skift
Carefree was recognised for creating the best design or strategic solution to enable social, economic, or environmental sustainability. Other winners included mainstay brands such as citizenM for its Contactless Stay App, Silvercar Responsible Travel Initiative by Audi and The Centurion® Lounge at John F. Kennedy Airport by American Express.
Carefree's co-founder, James Ricketts, was supported in the design of the brand by renowned studio Pentagram who, under the careful guidance of John Rushworth and Jane Pluer, helped bring together Carefree's spirit, innovative concept and experience delivery in the brand's visual architecture.
Charlotte Newman, Carefree’s CEO said: “We’re honoured to be listed as a winner among such high-profile entrants. As a small charity with global ambitions, we’ve always sought to create low-cost, high-impact solutions to incredibly complex social challenges. Together with the hospitality industry, we can unlock the full commercial and social value of their surplus inventory to support the wellbeing of the hidden, unpaid carers on which every healthcare system depends.”
Last year, Carefree was named Third Sector Breakthrough Charity of the Year in the UK based on its initial pilots with Bespoke Hotels, Classic Cottages and The Stobart Group. Key funding for the initiative has been provided by Baillie Gifford Investment Management, National Lottery Community Fund, Social Tech Trust, The Swire Charitable Trusts, and Postcode Innovation Trust, thanks to support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
According to new research released by Carers UK this month, unpaid carers have provided £135 billion of care since the start of the pandemic in March but have failed to gain the same public recognition for their role or support from corporate gifts-in-kind as their salaried NHS and Care Home Worker counterparts. Should they burnout or otherwise be unable to provide care the cost to the economy would be insurmountable.
Carefree’s impact model and easy-to-use technology provide a ready-to-go delivery mechanism to identify, verify and connect full-time, unpaid carers to donated breaks at a time and place that’s possible for them. Combined with its flexible gifting model to enable hospitality partners to manage their donations in line with availability it has the potential to radically open up widespread access to a short break for carers across the UK and beyond.
“With all of the difficulties facing the hospitality industry as a result of the pandemic it’s more important than ever to adopt new business models that are regenerative by design”, explains Charlotte Newman. “By leveraging their existing, under-utilised assets to prevent carer burnout, the hospitality industry can take a future-focused approach to proactively ensure greater resiliency in our healthcare system and embed social purpose into the DNA of their brand.”
Contact: Charlotte Newman (CEO), firstname.lastname@example.org / +44 (0) 20 3137 2578
Award Details: Skift IDEA Awards Winner List
Video Assets: https://vimeo.com/483633797
Brand Assets & Photos: Available on request
NOTES TO EDITOR
100 million unpaid carers in Europe.
45 million carers in the USA.
- 8.8 million unpaid carers, providing 80% of home care.
- £135 billion value in unpaid carer since the start of the pandemic in March
- £132 billion annual saving (pre-pandemic) to the public purse
- 64% of carers have not been able to take any breaks from their caring role during this time
- 46% of carers have not had a break in the past 5 years
- 3 in 5 people will care for someone during their lifetime
With 1 million unsold hotel rooms in the UK every week and thousands of holiday cottages unoccupied for up to half of the year, the potential number of 3-night breaks per annum exceeds 20 million.
- Winner: Sustainability (Skift Innovation Design & Experience Awards 2020)
- Winner: Breakthrough Charity of the Year (Third Sector Awards 2019)
- Best Practice Example (Social Care Institute for Excellence 2019)
- Selected for ‘Tech To Unite Us’ (Social Tech Trust 2019/20)
Founding Partners & Supporters
Baillie Gifford, Bespoke Hotels, Boltini Trust, Classic Cottages, Crix Capital, Crystal Amber Fund, Franklin Templeton, Garfield Weston Foundation, Kernow Carers Service, Khalastchi Foundation, National Lottery Community Fund, Postcode Innovation Trust, Strandpark Properties, Social Tech Trust, Swire Charitable Trusts and The Stobart Group