A young carer is someone under 18 and a Young adult carer is aged 16 to 25.
They help support and look after someone in their family, or a friend, who are ill, have a disability, mental health or substance misuse.
Many young people don't recognise themselves as carers.
What might a Young carer/ Young Adult Carer do?
- Practical tasks, such as cooking, housework and shopping.
- Physical care, such as helping someone out of bed.
- Emotional support, such as talking to someone who is distressed.
- Personal care, such as helping someone dress.
- Managing the family budget and collecting prescriptions.
- Helping to give medicine.
- Helping someone communicate.
- Looking after brothers and sisters.
Being a young carer can have a big impact on the things that are important to growing up
- It can affect a young person’s health, social life and self-confidence.
- Many young carers struggle to juggle their education and caring which can cause pressure and stress.
- 1 in 20 miss school because of their caring role.
- It can affect a young person’s health, social life and self confidence
- Recent research on young adult carers who were no longer in education showed their highest qualifications were GCSEs grade D–G.
(Stats from Carers Trust)
Here are two videos highlighting what it is like to be a carer, please take a few minutes to watch. You might feel as if you’re the only young person that this happens to, you are not. There are lots of other young carers in the UK, and there are groups that can help you.
Friends and your social life
As a young carer, you may miss out on opportunities to play and spend time with your friends and classmates. You may feel isolated from your friends because:
- you don't have as much free time as them
- you're often thinking about the person you look after
- you may be worried they will bully you
Being a young carer can make you stand out from other people, or you may find that you don't get included in certain activities.
It's important to get the help you need so that you have time to do the things you want to do and be with your friends.
You might feel as if you’re the only young person that this happens to, you are not. There are lots of other young carers in the UK, and there are groups that can help you.
Young Carers Support
Supporting your with their mental health Kooth, a free, safe and anonymous online support service visit http://www.kooth.com
Carers Support Dorset
Telephone 0800 368 8349
UP in BCP Services for Young People
Support for young people aged 12-19 (up to 25 if they have SEN/disability) in Bournemouth Christchurch and Poole. http://www.upinbcp.co.uk
My Time Young Carers
We’re not a clinical intervention. Our Project works across the whole of Dorset with schools, charities, and a wide variety of organisations to create an offer for Young People (13-25) and their parents/ carers.
For information about Dorset Mind Your Head Groups and Support ONLY: 01202-315329 ext. 2.
Get in touch with Carers Direct
For advice and support with caring issues over the phone, call the Carers Direct helpline on 0300 123 1053.
If you're deaf, deafblind, hard of hearing or have impaired speech, you can contact the Carers Direct helpline using textphone or minicom number 0300 123 1004.