What is a Young Carer?

The term “Young Carer” should be taken to include young people aged between 5 to 18 years of age, who provide regular and ongoing care and emotional support to a family member who is physically or mentally ill, disabled or misuses drugs / alcohol.

We are proud of the children and young people who are carers in Cumbria.  In Cumbria it is estimated that there are approximately 3,378 Young Carers across the County, 897 of these children are known to Children and Families Services.  All of these young people are supported in their caring role and have an individual support plan that is tailor-made to meet their needs.  We must also be mindful that these figures may not recognise young people who may care for an adult with mental health issues or substance misuse difficulties.

Children and Families Services Virtual School Team have published a Memorandum of Understanding (which you will find located on the right hand side of this page) between Children’s and Health Care Services.  This MOU provides a clear direction to services that they should adapt a “whole family” approach in order to support young carers and their families.  The guidance reflects current national policy and is intended to promote working together between Children and Families Services, Health and Care Services and offers an enhanced basis for working in partnership with Health, Education and Third Sector parties.

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