Find care and support

I am looking for support
We are developing in the Upper Calder Valley in West Yorkshire. ​It's a lovely part of the world.​ We'll be working in other locations towards the end of 2020. ​ Our ability to connect you with somebody wonderful depends on where you live and what you want.
Older woman reviewing Equal Care Co-op on her computer

I have already joined up and want to look at who is available or book some support.

Worker Profiles and Booking

frequently asked questions

How does it work?

Once we hear from you, we will give you a call or use your preferred communication method to understand your situation in more detail and let you know whether or not we'll be able to support you. We'll then arrange a visit from one of our Equal Care Facilitators. They'll meet with you and anyone else you'd like to be present to have a conversation - they'll ask about what you'd like from the support and what's important to you. You'll find out about the care and support workers available and we'll tell you about any volunteer support we're able to connect you with too.

Why are you different?

We are a co-operative, owned by the people who give and receive support. We are using technology to ensure much more of the hourly rate can go direct to workers rather than the 50% that's usual for care agencies. Receiving care and support all the time can actually make people more unwell, so we help the people getting support to share their skills, experience and kindness with others who will benefit.

How much do you pay your support workers?

Everyone offering support through eccoo is (currently) doing so as an independent worker. In order to run the platform and ensure we are curating trusted offers of support, we ask for a co-operative contribution of 15% of every hour of support paid for and a contribution from workers of 5% of their fee. This is much, much lower than traditional agencies (typically 50%). Workers tend to get between £12-£15 per hour. Because the fee is a contribution to enable the co-op to sustain itself, not an exercise in maximising profit, we shall be reducing it as we grow.

Do I have to join the co-operative in order to get support?

No, joining the co-operative as a Member is entirely voluntary and you are not restricted from getting support if you choose not to become a Member. You can find out more about membership here.

Do you provide a care and support service?

At the moment, we are categorised as an 'Introductory Agency', which means we only have responsibility for connecting you with someone who can support you. This is different from saying we provide the support. We are shortly to become a regulated provider of support which means we shall be able to help with support planning changes and review and monitor any personal care you are getting. We currently facilitate ongoing caregiving relationships but provide no 'direction or control' over regulated care. 

Do you put care workers on zero hour contracts?

Absolutely not. Currently, all care and support workers are independent, meaning they have full control over their hours, their fees and who they work with. We shall be offering employment contracts eventually but these will all be with guaranteed hours and will cover travel time. We strongly disapprove of the widespread practice of offering zero hour contracts, which can easily result in poor pay and appalling working conditions for care workers. So we don't offer them.

Do I have to sign a contract?

Yes, we ask you to agree to our Terms of Use and you also sign a contract between you and the person giving you support. We help you with this.

How do I know I'll get a good support worker?

Our care and support workers go through a vetting process, which involves an identity, Disclosure and Barring Service check, references and qualifications check, application form and face-to-face interview. Both of you will be able to have a trial period before committing to regular support.

What if there's an issue?

Your Equal Care Facilitator is there to facilitate the relationships you have with those supporting you. This includes unpaid relationships too, like family members and volunteers. They are there to help you work through any issues - often, 95% of problems can be worked out with good communication and kind, open discussion. If things really aren't working out, you can decide to choose someone else to support. We have a Problem-solving Policy, which sets this out in more detail.

Will you help me find the right support?

Yes! We can help you find the right person to support you. We look at your support in a holistic way, including family, volunteers and neighbours in your 'team'. This might mean finding a paid person or people to support you directly or course but it may also include other help, including for family members who are very involved in supporting you. We focus on the supportive relationships in your life (no matter who is doing the giving or who is doing the receiving) and we see our role as helping these to be the best they can be.