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 Carers in Schools

Who are young carers?

A young carer is a person under 18 who provides or intends to provide care for another person.  As many as one in 12 pupils in the UK could be a young carer.  These are often children caring for relatives without their teachers’ knowledge, slipping through the net, undetected by support services. The caring role they carry out means they have unique experiences and needs that can impact on their capacity to enjoy and achieve at school.

What are the potential impacts of caring on pupil attainment, achievement and wellbeing?

Young carers are a vulnerable and disadvantaged group specifically mentioned in Ofsted’s School Inspection Handbook (Ofsted, 2014).

27% of young carers (aged 11–15) miss school or experience educational difficulties
(40% where children care for a relative with drug or alcohol problems) (Dearden, C, Becker, S, 2004).

They have significantly lower educational attainment at GCSE level – the difference between nine Bs and nine Cs (The Children’s Society, 2013).

They are more likely than the national average not to be in education, employment or training (NEET)  between 16 and 19 (The Children’s Society,   2013).

A quarter of young carers said they were bullied at school because of their caring role (Carers Trust, 2013).

The Young Carers in Schools programme is an exciting England-wide initiative that aims to make it as easy as possible for schools to support young carers and awards good practice. Run jointly by Carers Trust and The Children’s Society Young Carers in Focus partners – As a local Network Partner to Carers Trust we are utilizing the programme to help schools and structure our support. 

Is your school doing great things for young carers?
Or does your school want to do more for young carers?

Increase identification, improve outcomes and gain an Award for your school through the Young Carers in Schools programme, run in partnership with Carers Trust and The Children’s Society.

Northamptonshire Young Carers Service provides FREE targeted 1:1 support, network meetings, advice and guidance making it easier than ever for you to get involved.  

By participating, your school will: 

  • Learn how to identify hidden young carers
  • Increase the attendance, attainment and wellbeing of this vulnerable pupil group
  • Demonstrate you are meeting the needs of this particularly vulnerable group of pupils (specifically mentioned in Ofsted’s Common Inspection Framework, 2015).

In autumn 2016, 58 schools, where young carers previously experienced difficulties attending and/or achieving at school reported the significant positive impacts of the programme:

  • 91% aid young carers were less likely to have high absence rates,
  • 86% reported young carers engaged better in class
  • 84% stated young carers were more motivated to learn.

Get involved This Young Carers Action Day: Click image to take you to our dedicated page for 

Some opportunities for schools to get involved this year include 

  • Sharing a pledge to ‘Take Action’ and do your upmost to identify and support Young Carers in your schools, this can be on Social Media, Websites, Newsletters/ Bulletins and across internal staff teams.
    (Please Tag us where possible)
  • Creating a display or asking Young Carers identified in your school to help produce this, and show your students you will act and support them if they feel that they are Young Carers.
  • Sharing information with families and Young People about support available to Carers locally, including info about our Virtual Festival celebrating Young Carers Action Day.
  • Hosting an event to consult with your identified Young Carers, invite a member of our staff to support/ facilitate *see campaign pack attached to help with ideas

If you wish to book an awareness session for your school (being offered virtually at present) please let us know and we can make arrangements.

Drop-ins and Educational Support

If you attend one of the colleges or the University in the County, we provide one to one support and drop-ins within these settings and can provide advice  and support when making key decisions regarding education, employment and training, including offering occasional University Open Day trips and supporting you in liaising with teachers and other professionals.

Contact [email protected] for further information.