Each year, national carers charity Carers Trust organises Young Carers Awareness Day, this year taking place on January 31st. The purpose of the day is to raise public awareness of the challenges faced by young people because of their caring role, and to campaign for greater support for young carers and their needs.
Young carers are more likely to suffer from poor mental health than their peers — so this year’s awareness day will focus on mental health. Earlier this month we talked to one of the young adult carers we work with, Sue, who talked about her experience caring for her dad and the difference support from the Centre has made.
Sue said: “Friends don’t always understand that I can’t always go out, so I get called boring. I was happy to finally find support to help me feel less alone. The Carers’ Centre has helped my life change for the better.”
Here at the Carers’ Centre Young Carers Service we are responding to this need. We will be focusing more on young people’s mental health in 2019, by launching our new Positive Penguin group (starting this month for primary age young carers) as well as continuing the iCare peer support group, starting back later on in March. These groups aim to offer a safe space for children and young people to discuss the pressures of caring, challenges they’re facing and to make friends with other young people who are in similar situations.