There are Young Carers in every school. A 2011 government census identified over 177,000, but this is just the tip of the iceberg, there could be as many as 700,000 which means that one in 12 children have caring responsibilities.
At Wheatfields Primary School we are committed to identifying, supporting and meeting the needs of Young Carers so that they can attend and enjoy school in the same way as their peers. We offer much support for identified young carers and their families;
- Fortnightly lunchtime group
- Confidential drop box for concerns and questions from parents and children
- Firm and supportive relationships with parents/families
- Links with school Inclusion workers, Mental Health Support Team (MHST), SEMH Lead
- Notice boards within the school building, offering information and advice for both parents and children and signposting who to speak to for more advice.
- Strong links with staff from Carering Together and Centre 33
If you think that you might be a Young Carer or you think that a child you know might be taking on a caring role within the home, for a member of the family, please come and speak to Mrs Cutbush. Speak freely in a safe, confidential and non-judgemental environment.
What might their caring role involve?
Different children will do different amounts to help at home but below is a list of the tasks they are likely to take on:
- Practical tasks such as washing, ironing, shopping for food and cooking the meals
- Physical care can involve lifting in and out of the bath or off and on the toilet, helping someone up the stairs
- Personal care could mean washing someone and dressing them and helping with more intimate needs
- Emotional support is often part of the caring role: listening to the personal problems, calming them down and simply being there to help them feel safe
- Young carers may have to look after their younger siblings, put them to bed, pick them up from school, help them with their homework and cook for them. They might have to run errands and pick up medication, accompany them to appointments, translate for them.
They might care for a brother or sister, a grandparents who lives with them or for a parent/carer/guardian.
Young Carers often support family with illness such as;
- Alcohol or drug misuse
- Mental illness
- Physical disability
- Learning disability
We are aware that Young Carers looking after someone also gain valuable skills in that role such as;
- A caring and nurturing personality
- Close relationship with family
We help to ensure that the responsibility for the child doesn’t become too great and that support the family are entitled too is being offered.