Derbyshire Carers Association project work: Reaching out to Young Carers

06 June 2014

About us

Derbyshire Carers Association was founded by Gerry Fryer in 1988 following circumstances which found him in the caring position as described by himself here.

Once he realised how little support there was for Carers Gerry aimed for and met his aspiration for Carer support provision.

With the help of some other Carers, Derbyshire Carers Association gained it’s first paid employee in 1989, this has now grown to over 30 dedicated and passionate employees as well as a large number of volunteers.

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Derbyshire Carers Association project work: Reaching out to Young Carers

Derbyshire Carers Association has been successful in a Big Lottery funding application, Awards for All. The funding will support a 6 month pilot project which will identify, engage with and ensure support for young Carers in Derbyshire. The project aims to raise awareness of young Carers, their issues and to reach ‘hidden Carers’.

Young Carers can be involved in care provision for a range of reasons; research suggests that care is usually provided in the young person’s own home, usually to support a relative (parent, sibling, grandparent etc.) who is experiencing illness or disability, be this physical, or psychological. Responsibilities can range from helping out with domestic chores, home finances and management, through to providing full personal care for a significantly disabled individual.

Research suggests that many young Carers do not necessarily see themselves as Carers, either through lack of awareness, or because they are actively encouraged to ‘play down their role’ by family, through fear or shame. Further complicating this are the blurred boundaries of responsibility between adults and children’s services and a lack of awareness among many professional groups of young Carers’ needs and concerns.

The stresses and coping difficulties which are attributed to adult Carers can be found in young Carers also. Although it has been suggested that some young Carers cope better than their adult counterparts because many of them have grown up within their caring role and ‘normalized’ their experience. Young Carers remain vulnerable, and in need of support.
Working closely with Schools, Social Services, Health, Independent and Voluntary Sector partners the pilot will aim to:

  • Raise awareness of the role of young Carers using a poster publicity campaign focused in Schools, GP Practices and Community Facilities.
  • Develop resources, in consultation with schools, aimed at supporting the particular and specific needs of young Carers.
  • Provide practical support for young Carers in line with the requirements of The Children and Families Bill as amended in October 2013.
  • Use technology in order to reach out to hidden Carers, with particular focus on Facebook and Twitter as means of communicating with young Carers across the county.
  • Facilitate a peer support network where young Carers can seek additional help.

Summer Newsletter Here

Visit Action For Children here
Visit the Young Carers Facebook page here
Visit the Young Carers Twitter page here
Download our Consultation Questionnaire here
Download Toolkit for Schools here

Carers Week
Download Agony Aunt Carers Week here
Download Awareness Day Poster here
Download Case Studies here
Download Young Carer Books here
Download Young Carers Quiz here
Download Young Carers Information Poster here
Download Young Carers Information Pack here

More Information
For more information on this project, and details of how to get involved, please contact Debra Dudley at Chesterfield Carers Centre on 01246 222373 Ext 3 or e-mail debra.dudley@derbyshirecarers.co.uk or youngcarers@derbyshirecarers.co.uk

Alternatively, visit us on Facebook and Twitter
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Young Carer project launch

Young Carers Project Worker Debra Dudley, Narinder Sharma, Derbyshire Carers Association Chief Executive and Helen Weston, Project Leader for our Teaming up from Transition Project, meet Prem Singh, Chairman of Derbyshire Community Health Services and Toby Perkins, MP for Chesterfield at the launch of our new Young Carers project on Friday 6 June.

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