What is a young carer?
A young carer is a child or young person aged from five to 18 years of age who helps to look after (or ‘care’ for) someone such as their mum, dad, grandparents, brothers or sisters who couldn't manage otherwise without their help.
What do they do?
The sort of things a young carer may do are:
- Collecting prescriptions and/or helping to make sure the person they look after takes their medication
- Looking after younger brothers or sisters
- Cooking meals
- Doing regular housework
- Accompanying the person they help care for to appointments
- Providing emotional support – being there to listen
How many young carers are there in Shropshire?
There are around 650 known young carers in Shropshire, but there are probably lots more children and young people who are caring, but just see this as being part of a family. Helping to look after or ‘care’ for someone can be rewarding, but tiring too. It can affect schoolwork and seeing friends, but our young carers tell us they want to be treated like any other child or young person.
What support is there for young carers in Shropshire?
The Carers Trust4All young carers service can help! It runs ‘time-out’ activities and days out, and holds monthly young carer groups that meet across the county. Any young carer, or anyone who thinks they may be a young carer, can contact Carers Trust4All for help and support. To find out more call 01743 341995 during office hours. School staff, youth groups or any other service that works with children and young people can ring this number too.
Check out our Shropshire Telford and Wrekin Young carers video clips about being young carers in Shropshire.
Young carers from Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin worked together to produce a leaflet which aims to raise awareness of young carers in schools and colleges. A creative workshop was held, and a ‘Z’ style leaflet produced. It has information for young carers or those who may not self-identify as young carers on one side, and information for staff on the other. Shropshire and Telford & Wrekin local authorities gained joint funding from NHS England for this project.
Read the leaflet here.