Who are young Carers?
Children aged 18 and under who care, or help care for a relative with:
A physical or learning disability
Mental health problem
A long term illness including age related issues, HIV and AIDSDrug and/or alcohol misuse
Been subject to or witnessed domestic violence
The person they are caring for may be a parent, brother, sister or close friend. They may have help with their caring role from another family member or they may be the sole carer.
What do these young people do?
Some have to do everything at home, they may have to:
- Care for a parent with little or no support
- Help with personal care i.e bathing and toileting
- Manage the finances of the home
- Take care of younger siblings
- Cook, wash, iron, clean, shop etc
- Offer emotional support
Also look after themselves, give medication and organise medical appointments.
Why do they have to cope with so much & how does it affect them?
Often they see it as their duty and because there is no one else to undertake these tasks.
- They get very tired
- They feel isolated from their peer group as they have much less time to socialise
- They may feel unable to have friends home and may be bullied
- They are often unable to go out as a family
- Their education may suffer as a result of additional responsibilities which may impact attendance, concentration or the opportunity to complete homework
How does the project help?
- Group Sessions – The sessions provide the children and young people with a break from caring, gives them the opportunity to meet others with similar responsibilities, join in with the fun and educational activities and trips out, providing them with access to support and a variety of information. Group sessions are held across the Rochford District, in Rayleigh and Rochford.
- One to One Support Services – offered in the Primary and Secondary Schools in the Rochford District.