The Norfolk Millennium Trust for Carers makes grants to unpaid carers in the county to provide a better quality of life for them and their loved ones.
The grants fund practical items like washing machines and laptops, power packs for wheelchairs, and short breaks and leisure activities which relieve the 24/7 pressures of caring.
The Trust was born out of the We Care Appeal, launched through Norfolk's daily newspaper, the Eastern Daily Press, in October 1998 after research identified the huge number of unpaid carers and the need to help them.
It is estimated that as many as one in seven adults in the county is an unpaid carer - including pensioners looking after their ailing spouses and as many as 5,570 children and young adult carers to the age of 24 but some as young as nine, combining the pressures of school and growing up with caring for a poorly parent.
Collectively carers save the NHS and other public services £119 billion a year, an average of £18,473 per carer.
The appeal's aim was simple - to establish an enduring charitable trust giving financial and practical help to unpaid carers in their crucial and often undervalued roles. Today the endowment trust fund stands at more than £1.1million.
All the money raised is invested by the Trust to provide an annual income which then goes on grants to men, women and children around Norfolk caring for sick, infirm, elderly and disabled relatives and friends.
The trust's work has become even more important with more and more people living longer and public funding for care services being cut.
How the We Care appeal was launched - EDP, October 16 1998
Thanks a million - target reached. EDP, Dec 26 2009