Who are young carers and how can we help?
A young carer is a child or young person who provides substantial unpaid care for a relative who has disabilities, long-term physical illnesses, mental health difficulties and/or drug or alcohol issues.
They may be taking on practical and/or emotional caring responsibilities that an adult would normally take on. Young carers provide help by doing things like jobs around the house, shopping, helping with personal care (bathing, getting dressed), giving medication, providing emotional support, helping with finances, and looking after themselves or their brothers and sisters.
Young carers can often find life tiring, worrying and lonely. Being a carer can affect a young person in many ways – including social isolation, bullying, difficulties with school attendance and achievement, and physical and mental ill health themselves.
We aim to reduce the impacts of their caring by building young carers' confidence and resilience and improving their health and well-being. We do this through one-to-one support, group support, trips, holidays, support with education, employment, training and transition, and by using a whole family approach to promote positive, long-term changes for everyone at home.
We currently offer two services:
Help for young people (young carers and young people affected by substance misuse in their families)
Help for families being cared-for by a young person in their family
We also work with other agencies including schools, social care and health services to ensure that better support is available to young carers in their day to day life.