About this service
A Young Carer is a child or young person (aged from 5 to 25) whose life is affected by caring for at least one family member, over and above just 'helping out'. This could include caring for:
- Close relative(s)
There are many children and young people who help to care for a parent, brother or sister or other relative, who is disabled, has an illness, mental health problem or experiences drug or alcohol related issues. The Wiltshire Handbook for Carers 1.1mb Carers handbook 2013 was launched in Carers Week in June 2012 and was published in partnership by Wiltshire Council and NHS Wiltshire, it contains useful information for carers and is available free from the Carers Coordinator at Wiltshire Council or you can ask at your GP Surgery.
Tel: 0800 066 5068
Communities and Voluntary Sector Support
If you are a young carer your own health and development may be affected because of your caring responsibilities. In addition to the daily tasks you may have to complete (such as housework, cooking and bathing) you may live with the added pressure of school and, often, a lack of understanding from schoolmates. You may not get the chance to go out with your friends or do your homework. The physical and emotional strain is sometimes too much – maybe you skip school and you might worry a lot about your home situation.
As a young carer you have the same rights as other carers under the NHS and Community Care Act 1990. You may even be considered as a 'child in need' under the Children Act (1989). This depends on whether we at Wiltshire's Children and Families department considers that your role as a carer prevents you from achieving or maintaining a reasonable standard of social opportunities and achieving full school attendance.
Estimates of the number of young carers in the UK vary between 15,000 and 50,000. The number of young carers in Wiltshire is estimated to be 1800 (Princess Royal Trust research).
In Wiltshire support for young carers is provided by Youth Action Wiltshire. They can provide advice at the end of the phone, emotional support, practical assistance and to those who have significant caring responsibilities affecting their lives, a range of activities and a chance to have fun and relax with other young carers. These activities include:
- Healthy living projects helping understanding of what a safe caring role is
- Mentoring one to one sessions looking at individual needs
- Support to ensure the right services are accessed.
- C4CK young carers volunteering programme
- Environmental and conservation projects
- Leadership and skills development
- Money matters education
- Sports and arts activities
- Day trips and short overnight breaks
If you think you may be a young carer or know someone who is, please contact
Wiltshire Young Carers at:
Youth Action Wiltshire
St Joseph's Place
- Princess Royal Trust for Carers
- Caring about Carers
- Children’s Society - Young Carers Initiative
- Young Carers Net
- Young Carers Research Group at Loughborough University
- Young Minds
- National Youth Agency
Last updated: 28 August 2012