We care for young adult carers
You may think that looking after a family member is normal or it’s just what you do, but if you do this regularly and someone depends on your help, you are probably a carer. Young adult carers are people whose lives are affected by caring for someone at home. Although caring can be deeply rewarding it can also be time-consuming, affect someone emotionally, physically and/or socially and impact on your education, work and finances.
1 in 5 young people are caring in England*.
Am I A Carer?
If you are not sure whether you are a carer ask yourself:
Carers often help someone at home with tasks such as: getting washed; getting dressed; communicating; shopping; paying bills; medication; etc.
Sound familiar? You may be a carer.
Our support for carers
Carers assessmentsTo help you get support as a young adult carer we will carry out an assessment first. This helps us to understand what life is like for you as a carer and helps you to find out what support you can get. We put this together in a support plan. During your assessment we look at:
- Tasks you carry out at home and for the person, you care for
- How caring affects your social life, your physical and emotional health and your access to education or work
- What support is already in place for you
- What other support is available for you and your family
Life is different for each young adult carer so your support plan is designed for your very individual situation and needs. You will also get help from the support work that we provide, individually or in a group.
Support workers can help you to manage your feelings, worries about caring, share your ambitions or wishes while getting a chance to build your knowledge and skills. You may want to know more about the condition for the person you care for or chat about your future.
Events and activitiesIt is important for carers to have time out from caring but we understand that can be difficult. Things like transport, money or your caring situation may make it hard to do these things. We try to make it easier by offering free activities to give you: a chance to have fun; build friendships with people who understand; time to yourself; and to do things that are usually hard to do as a carer. Please look at our online calendar or newsletter to find out more.
Support in educationWe work in partnership with a number of schools, colleges and universities in the local area who want to support young adult carers too. Some have their own carers card, drop-in sessions and some colleges offer a discretionary bursary to carers. We also continue to support education with the Young Carers in Schools Awards Scheme.
TrainingWe ask young adult carers to tell us what they need to learn to improve their caring role or to make it easier. We then design our training sessions based on their answers. In the past, we have delivered training sessions such as first aid, interview techniques and building confidence and attended job fairs. All our training is designed to be appropriate for the age of those taking part.
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Will social services be involved?There is no need for social services to be involved unless there is a risk of harm to the young adult carer.
What services are available to me?Carers assessments, look at everything you do as a carer and how we can help. One to one sessions with a Support Worker can help you with your feelings and anything related to caring. Activities and clubs, We know carers need a time out – so we offer activities at no cost to give you a chance to have fun and make new friends with others who understand. We also run peer mentoring and befriending sessions. You will also be issued with a carers card that can be used for discounts.
Can you help me with my education or work?We have helped a number of young adult carers in education. This includes liaising with education providers to implement support for carers. We have also been able to access funding to purchase IT equipment used for education. We also run some training sessions to help you get employed including CV workshops and interview techniques.
Will I be able to go to all of the activities?Not all of them, we support a lot of carers and we never have enough places for everyone. We make our selections based on a carer’s need for a break from caring first. After that, we then look at when was the last time you attended a trip. You can register your interest in everything, if there is no space you will be put on the waiting list. If anyone drops out you may be called last minute to see if you want to attend.
I don’t want to do anything; I don’t know anyone?
Meeting other carers that know what you are going through helps to reduce isolation.
We always do a quick icebreaker for people to get to know one another a bit better. There are also staff, peer mentors and befrienders that can help you. You do not have to do anything that you don’t want to, it is entirely up to you. This is the same for any activity we have if you change your mind that is ok.
Some only have a carers card so that can have a discount or a free place because they are a carer.