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Meg Munn MP - Sheffield Heeley's voice in Parliament | Welcome
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Young carers get chance to voice their concerns

Monday, January 23, 2012

Meg Munn MP invited Children’s Minister Sarah Teather to meet Sheffield young carers after Meg heard of their concerns about the support that is currently available to them in schools. The Minister agreed to visit and discuss with a group of young carers their experiences of having to take on such a vital role at a young age.


The plight of young carers is often hidden but is nevertheless shockingly common. BBC research in 2010 found that around one in 12 children and young people in the UK provide mid to high levels of care for a loved one. Sheffield City Council estimates there are at least 2,000 young carers under the age of 16 in the city.


Caring involves grappling with responsibilities normally associated with adulthood: managing the family budget, doing the shopping, washing and dressing someone, administering medication or being there emotionally for someone who may have no other sources of support or company.  The impact can be considerable, especially on their education. 


The Sheffield Young Carers Project offers support, understanding and respite for young carers, some of whom are as young as eight years old, by providing group activities and learning experiences, one to one support and residential breaks.


Meg said:


“I’m pleased that the minister came to Sheffield and listened to what local young carers are saying to me. I know they have concerns over teachers recognising the important role they have at home as carers, and the impact this can have on their school work and education.


The most important first step schools can take is to find out which students are young carers, which will provide understanding of how this affects their lives and education. Whilst some schools are very good at identifying and supporting young carers, some have a long way to go. Government also has a role to play, so I will continue to raise issues on behalf of local young carers in parliament.”


For more information visit www.sheffieldyoungcarers.org.uk   

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