What we do - Include Programme

The Children’s Society’s Include Programme offers information, training and support to both statutory and voluntary sectors working to support young carers. 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. We 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.
The aim of the Include Programme is to develop a national focus for young carers, their families and those who work to support them; to promote common standards and to work towards the realisation of equitable services. All of our work is informed by consultation with young carers and their families and those who work to support them.
This is achieved through several complimentary strands of work:

Making a step change for young carers and their families: Putting it into practice - following our Prevention through Partnership programme and the two year Making a step change - Prevention, Intervention and Partnership project, the Department for Education has funded a further one year project, which is focused on supporting the effective implementation of the duties required under the Care Act 2014 and the Children and Families Act 2014 with regard to young carers and their families. 

Young Carers in Focus - funded by the Big Lottery Fund, and in partnership with DigitalME, YMCA Fairthorne Group, Rethink Mental Illness and The Fatherhood Institute, the programme aims to develop an England-wide network of Young Carers Champions. The initiative aims to give young carers a chance to communicate, share their stories and advocate for the things that matter most to them, while receiving training and skills which will improve their resilience, confidence, skills and knowledge. This programme has also developed a safe social network for young carers across England through the Makewaves site.

Young Carers in Schools - run jointly with Carers Trust and funded by The Queen's Trust and The Big Lottery Fund, the programme aims to improve the identification and support of young carers in schools across the country, so they get the help they need. By taking part in the programme, schools will be able to show that they are meeting the needs of a particularly vulnerable group of pupils (specifically mentioned in Ofsted's School Inspection Handbook).  

Within the national Family Health Inclusion project, our past work has incorporated:

The Engage Toolkit - supports black and minority ethnic young carers and family carers – including adults and children’s services, Health, Education and the voluntary sector – and anyone providing services to families affected by ill health and disability. This toolkit, funded by the Department of Health, brings together information and resources to help develop and implement best policy and practice for services to support black and minority ethnic young carers and family carers.

The Refugee Toolkit‌ - an online tool, funded by the Department of Health, for all adult and children’s services practitioners, education, health and other agencies in contact with refugee and asylum seeking families, particularly those working with families affected by ill-health and disability and where there are young carers.

The toolkit for families affected by HIV - this toolkit has been funded by the Elton John Aids Foundation and provides information, resources and good practice guidance about supporting young carers in families affected by HIV.

The Include programme is a part of The Children's Society.