Are you a young carer? Do you know a young carer?
The LOFT Youth Project, in partnership with the Carers’ Association has developed a young carers’ service which includes individual and peer support. This is part of wider programme of supports being developed through a Donegal Young Carers Networking Group. Young Carers are “children and young people under 18 who provide regular or ongoing care and emotional support to a family or household member who is physically or mentally ill, disabled or misuses substances… a young carer becomes vulnerable when the level of care-giving and responsibility to the person in need of care becomes excessive or inappropriate for that child, risking impact on his or her emotional or physical well-being or educational achievement and life chances”. (The Association of Directors or Children’s Services).
A young carer may undertake some or all of the following; Practical Tasks, Physical Care, Personal and intimate care tasks, Household management, Administering medication and medication management, Looking after younger siblings, Providing emotional support, Interpreting, due to hearing or speech impairment or because English is not the family’s first language.
The 2011 census recorded 284 young carers in Co. Donegal, however, the number is estimated to be as high as 1500. Young people often don’t recognise the label of being a carer or they may feel anxiety about reaching out for support. Through the Young Carers Project, we aim to identify, engage and support young carers aged 12-18 years as well as raising awareness of the role young carers have within our community, the challenges faced and valuable care they provide. The programme includes:
- Individual needs identification and support plan for each young carer
- One-to-one support
- Young carers peer activity group
- Respite activities, having fun with other young carers
- School support
- Training programmes to help young carers stay safe and well.
Group meetings are held in the LOFT Youth Project, Letterkenny on alternate Saturdays, 12pm-2pm. If you would like any further information on this project please contact email@example.com or phone 074-9129630.