Young Carers

Northamptonshire Young Carers Service

Northamptonshire Young Carers Service exists to help promote the health and wellbeing of young carers and their families.

We will work to make sure young carers are identified and recognised within our local community and help to prevent them taking on more responsibility than they should or could cope with. We aim to help them reduce feelings of isolation. We understand that young carers are individuals in individual families and have different needs.  We will allow young carers and their families a say in what our support will be with a focus on improving confidence and helping prevent the type of problems that young carer families may face.

We aim to promote an understanding of the balance needed between being a Carer and having an opportunity to have hopes and dreams that will in turn help young carers to fulfil their individual potential.

Young Carer and Young Adult Carer Support

There are a number of ways we set out to recognise and support Young Carers and Young Adult Carers.
We will listen to you and try to respond in the best way to suit your individual and family needs.
Below are a few examples of how we work and what we try to achieve following a referral to us for support. 

Assessment and Support Planning

The Young Carers Service will assess a family on an individual basis taking into account that the impact of the young person’s role may differ depending on age and other family circumstances. 
Initially this is likely to be via telephone to the family, occasionally we will go back and speak to a referrer to clarify circumstances and best understand how we may be able to help. We will endeavour to work with other professionals for maximum impact and benefit to the Young Carer/s in a family. 

If you are aged between 5 and 15 years of age you will receive a needs assessment.
If you are 16 or 17 years of age you will be offered a transitional assessment which focuses on moving into adulthood and aspirations.
If you are 18 years or over you will be offered an adult carer assessment.

We can then offer a range of support including; 1-1 listening support, social activities, funded groups, working with schools, advocacy and family support (such as signposting to relevant agencies).
The tools we use to gather information vary and it is often led by the Young Carer and their families. 

If you wish to Make a Referral Please Click the take you to the Young Carers Referral Form 

Groups and Social Activities

We recognise that it can be difficult to get out and socialise as a young person who cares. By offering social activities throughout the calendar year we try to reach as many Young Carers as possible and ensure that they are not missing out on opportunities to try new things, meet others in a similar situation to themselves and just get a break!
The events are often in the school holidays and promoted to registered Young Carers via invite or on our social media pages. The social activities are a chance to try something young carers may not get a chance to do with their families. We rely on individual funding for many of our groups, so the number of activities available will vary.

Young Carer Groups

The Young Carers Service offers regular online groups, all with a different focus.  Young Carers can access sessions based on emotional wellbeing and coping strategies, or art/crafts/hobbies, games nights, book club, and online gaming.  Throughout the year we also run specialist groups dependent on needs.  Examples include sleep workshops, sibling support sessions, and school groups.

One to One Support

When you initially come on board with us you are likely to have a 1-1 whereby you can meet your allocated Young Carer Worker, get to know them and have an opportunity to start working towards some identified goals or aims. Sometimes young carers may need a chance to talk about their worries or ask for help.  The young carer workers offer a listening ear or advice to help you, if you haven’t got anyone else to talk.  Sometimes this support is called advocacy support. If you feel you need some more intense listening or counselling support we can also support you in accessing this where possible. 

Young Carer Forums/ Steering Groups

Throughout the year Young Carer Forums/ Steering Groups are held.  The Groups are a chance for young carers to be involved in sharing ideas for service development.  Also, there are opportunities to inform other services about young carers' needs and experiences. If this is something you are interested in joining ask a member of the team.  More recently we have established a LGBTQ+ Inclusion Working Group who look at making sure we are being as inclusive as we can.