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Caregiving as a youth: A guide to helping others and yourself

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What are young carers?

Being a young carer often means looking after a family member who is ill, or helping them by looking after the other members of the family while they can’t.
Young carers often do more chores than other young people. On top of providing emotional support to the person they are caring for, they may also have to learn how to nurse them or look after their personal needs like bathing and dressing.

Hard work being a young carer

Sometimes others might not understand your responsibilities and you have less free time than others.
Many young people cope well with caring, especially if you have support from other family members, but it’s still important to look after yourself. You have the right to be looked after too and there are lots of places and people you can go to to get help.

Getting help

You’re not alone if you experience any of these feelings. Young carers miss an average of 48 days of school because of their role and 68% have been bullied at some point directly because of having to care for someone. Organisations set up to help young carers recognise all of these problems , and these organisations have people and strategies to support you.

Tips from young people like you

‘Make sure to take time for yourself so that you are not always spending time caring for your family member.'

Tips from young people like you

‘Reaching out to others, like at school/ college or specific young carers groups/ support services, can reduce some of the pressure and help to improve your mental health.'

Tips from young people like you

‘You should make sure that someone is looking out for you such as a teacher or friends, so you don’t feel alone.'

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