The Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee considered the progress over the last year of the Aberdeenshire Young Carer Strategy 2021-2023.
The council commissions social care charity Quarriers to provide an information, advice, and a support service for young carers in Aberdeenshire.
There are 194 young carers registered with Quarriers. Family Wellbeing Workers provide approximately 74 young carers with intensive or regular support.
Highlights over the last year included events during the summer and October holidays at Lochter and Haddo House, which allowed the young carers to take a break from their caring responsibilities, catch up and have fun with people their own age. Young carers took part in a range of activities including riding Segways, going go-karting, taking part in bushcraft, and archery.
Activity boxes were also provided to 80 young carers who experienced a significant impact on their health and wellbeing during the Coronavirus pandemic. These boxes were tailored to their needs and interests of the young carer. Examples included arts and crafts materials, products for pamper sessions, books and games, garden toys and activities.
The Health and Wellbeing Grant was launched in August. It provides up to £300 to allow young carers to meet their health and wellbeing needs. Since its launch, 16 young carers have benefitted from the grant by purchasing bicycles, fitness equipment, ice skating membership, driving lessons, and craft materials.
The Aberdeenshire Schools Young Carers Charter was launched on Carers Rights Day on Thursday, November 25. The charter commits schools to a range of actions including being sensitive to Young Carers needs and appointing a Young Carers Champion within the school. Six schools signed up to the charter with information and resources provided by the carer support team where this has been requested.
Cllr Gillian Owen, Aberdeenshire Council’s Education and Children’s Services Committee chair, said: “I am delighted to hear about all the activities that have taken place over the last year to raise awareness of young carers and to support young carers themselves. Young Carers play a vital role helping a family member or friend in need who often can’t care for themselves. This supporting role is often done in addition to going to school, doing homework and all the other activities that young people participate in.”
Committee vice chair Cllr Rosemary Bruce added: “It is great to see schools raising awareness of Young Carers through initiatives like the Young Carers Charter. This collaborative approach will allow all involved to get a better understanding of what a Young Carer is and how everyone can work collectively to offer support.”
From Aberdeenshire Council