Today, Wednesday 16 March, is Young Carers Action Day. Young Carers Action Day is an annual event organised by Carers Trust. This year, at Caring Together we have been involved in a wide range of activities in the build up to this important day, and there are simple ways you can support these and make a difference to young carers.
You can find out more about what we have been doing below, and here are three ways you can mark Young Carers Action Day, whether you do them today or in the days ahead.
- If you or your organisation are on social media, you can share one or more of the items below to raise awareness of young carers and Young Carers Action Day. Tag in Caring Together and use the hashtag #YoungCarersActionDay
- You could share information within your organisation – there are likely to be people who know young carers, but may not have even realised what a young carer is. Why not share the Who A I Poem recorded by Young Carers National Voice?
- See if you, your organisation or someone you know wants to join the Young Carers Alliance, or simply to find out more.
See more about our work to support young carers below.
Ground-breaking new alliance to bring change for young carers and young adult carers
More than five years on from the introduction of formal rights for young carers, and young adult carers, thousands of children and young people are still being negatively affected by the impact of their caring responsibilities.
Caring Together and a coalition of more than 30 organisations and individuals from a wide range of sectors including health, education, social care and the voluntary sector have taken action by launching a new network, the Young Carers Alliance, on the eve of Young Carers Action Day.
And you can see more about the Young Carers Alliance:
- Read about the Young Carers Alliance including how individuals or organisations can join. caringtogether.org/professionals/media-research-and-policy/young-carers-alliance
- Blog: It’s time for us to turn rights into reality for young carers and young adult carers. Andy McGowan, head of engagement at Caring Together, gives his thoughts on the experiences of young carers, why the Young Carers Alliance is so essential. caringtogether.org/news/blog-young-carers-action-day
Young carer thanks Peterborough United for his first match ticket
We want to say a huge thank you to the Peterborough United Foundation for inviting two football mad young carers to the home match against Stoke City on Saturday.
Find out more at caringtogether.org/news/young-carer-thanks-the-posh
Important breaks for young carers
Young carers being able to take time away from their caring role, spending time with their peers, and enjoying the normal activities for people their age is hugely important, and part of our work.
On Saturday, we also brought a group of young carers and young adult carers from our Norfolk Young Carers together over Pizza and Easter Eggs to look at improving support for Young Carers and Young Adult Carers across the county.
We also run regular activities for young carers and young adult carers across Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and Norfolk.
You can see more at caringtogether.org/events
Contact us if you want to know about how you could support young carers with a break from their caring role.
Showing how GPs can make a difference to young carers
Young carers say they feel invisible and often in distress, with up to 40% reporting mental health problems arising from their experience of caring.
Young carers should not feel they are struggling to cope on their own. And that is why Caring Together are working with a NHS England and NHS Improvement campaign to show GPs how they can make a difference to young carers.
Young carers and young adult carers have also taken part in videos where they talk about their experiences:
- “They take Dad’s word and won’t listen to me” -Abby’s story – caringtogether.org/news/young-adult-carer-abby-story
- “I want to feel like they know I am there, and I am a young carer” – Heather’s story – caringtogether.org/news/young-carer-heather-story
- “I don’t want to be treated like I don’t know anything” – Liam’s story – caringtogether.org/news/young-carer-liam-story
New App for young carers
Young carers need proper support around them to make sure they’re able to care for their loved ones while taking care of their own physical and mental health, and working towards a bright and healthy future.
The new Young Carers Support app enables young and young adult carers in the UK to find information and advice, self-help resources, wellbeing tips and activities, plus a catalogue of support services – all in one place.
Caring Together and partners, Centre 33 and Carers Matter Norfolk, have worked with Expert Self Care Ltd, to ensure there is also local information available for young carers in Cambridgeshire, Peterborough and Norfolk.
See details on the local launch for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough at caringtogether.org/news/new-app-for-young-carers
The App is free and available for any young carer, or professional working with young carers to download on Android and iOS.
Resources from Young Carer National Voice
Young Carers National Voice campaigns collectively on the issues that are important to young carers.
They have recorded a poem that highlights the types of situations faced by so many young carers.
They have also produced:
- Suggested wording for mental health referral forms [PDF, 138kB]
- Top tips for mental health professionals [PDF, 644kB]
Raising awareness of young carers
Our awareness team have busy delivering a mixture of virtual and in-person awareness-raising sessions for staff and young people across Norfolk. This week has seen us deliver sessions to:
- The Bishop’s CE Primary School
- Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (including a specific session for staff from their hospital discharge team)
- Watton Infant School
- Watton Junior School
- Norfolk Community Health and Care
We were also really pleased to link up with one of our close partners, West Norfolk Carers for a Young Carers Action Day event for schools in West Norfolk.
We have also been meeting with schools and health organisations, talking to them about how they can get involved with our Carer Friendly Tick Award.
We have been raising awareness of young carers, young adult carers and the new Young Carers Alliance through interviews for Carers World Live, Greatest Hits Radio West Norfolk and Norfolk and North Suffolk and Care Choices.
Carers Trust survey identifies steep rise in caring hours for young carers
Findings from a new Carers Trust survey have revealed how an alarming lack of support, coupled with a dramatic rise in time spent caring, is leaving thousands of young carers across the UK feeling ‘lonely’, ‘exhausted’, ‘worried’, ‘burned out’ and ‘stressed’.
Carers Trust is responding to the survey findings by calling on the UK government, the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and other stakeholders, to take action to address isolation among young carers and young adult carers.
More about Young Carers Action Day
Young Carers Action Day is an annual event, organised each year by Carers Trust.
It’s a day for raising public awareness of young carers and young adult carers, the pressures and challenges they face, and the incredible contribution they make by caring for their family members and friends.
It is also a day to call for more action to support young and young adult carers and give them the extra bit of help they need to live full and healthy lives.