Supporting young carers and their families
Information and resources for all professionals
As part of The Children's Society, the Include Programme reaches out to young carers from all communities through our national and local programmes, helping voluntary and statutory services supporting young carers. We also campaign for change and promote best practice with central and local government and work in partnership with social workers, teachers and health care professionals to deliver solutions that consider the needs of the whole family.
We achieve these pursuits through complimentary areas of work:
- Our Making a step change programme works nationally, focusing on helping local authorities develop whole family support for young carers and their families, specifically focusing on the Children and Families Act and the Care Act.
- Our Young Carers in Focus programme is developing an England-wide network of Young Carers Champions to advocate change locally and nationally for young carers and their families.
- Our innovative new programme Young Carers in Schools works with teachers and school professionals across England to meet the needs of young carers.
- Our focus on hidden groups of young carers provides tools to support refugee families, BME (black and minority ethnic) family carers and families affected by HIV.
Young carers include children and other young people under 18 who provide regular or ongoing care and emotional support to a family member who is physically or mentally ill, disabled, or misuses substances. Summary of the new rights for young carers and their families: o Local authorities must take reasonable steps to identify and assess young carers in their area who have support needs. All young carers under the age of 18 have a right to an assessment of their need, no matter who they care for, what type of care they provide, or how often they provide it. o Young adult carers in “transition” from receiving services from children’s services to receiving them from adult services also have the right to an assessment. This should consider how to support young adult carers to prepare for adulthood by thinking about their own outcomes and aspirations, and how they might fulfil their own potential in education, employment and life. o Local authorities also have a role in preventing future need. This means that they may provide services to a young carer, or the person they care for, if this would prevent a caring role having a negative impact on the young carers’ wellbeing in future.