‘Purple Match’ launched to bring individuals and carers together in perfect harmony

Disability not-for-profit, Purple has launched a unique carer-matching service, Purple Match, to connect disabled people with carers based on their interests and hobbies.

The pairing site, which is the first of its kind in the UK, enables users to search for and select carers who are best suited to their needs as well as matching them with personality traits and interests. It is hoped this tailored approach will create stronger pairings and ultimately foster friendships between individuals and carers in the county.

After a successful winning of Cambridgeshire County Council’s direct payment support contract earlier this year, Purple has developed the online tool to support people wishing to stay in their own home and live independently. It is also hoped that the site’s functionality will encourage more local people in Cambridgeshire to consider employment as a carer, whether full time or as a second job in the evenings and/or weekends.

The approach also allows disabled people and carers to plan together an employment environment and schedule that suits the specific needs of all involved.

The site’s release is part of Purple’s commitment to shake up the market across Cambridgeshire and increase the number of potential carers to meet a growing need by disabled people.

Local resident Lynda Pike has felt the benefits of the new matching system first-hand and uses Purple Match for her disabled partner. She comments: “My husband can be very nervous and having strangers come in and support him made this worse. Being able to choose the carer, after those assigned previously were undertrained, has made a massive difference to our lives”.

Rebecca Metcalfe, who has become a personal assistant using the service comments: “I feel like I have a better relationship with the people I care for than when I worked for an agency, as I feel the support I provide is now much more tailored to the individual. My employer’s opinions matter to me – and mine to them – so this personal match makes such an impact”.

Lynda and Rebecca’s situation is not uncommon which is why Chief Executive of Purple, Mike Adams OBE, felt the need to create such a matching system. Mike has been highly influential at a national level in shaping a new vision for disability.

He comments: “The launch of Purple Match, following the opening of our Cambridgeshire office earlier this year, allows us to continue our work championing disabled people in providing personalised, tailored services across the county. Our long-term aim is to ensure we move the conversation away from one of disadvantage and inequality to one about potential and value”.

It is hoped that allowing those with disabilities to select a carer based on personal traits, such as mutual interests, will result in longer lasting care relationships.

For more information on Purple Match, go to www.wearepurple.org.uk/purplematch