9 Feb 2016

Henley Festival and The Children’s Society have signed an exciting new partnership to offer vital support to children as young as ten providing vital care for loved ones.

Official statistics estimate that there are 166,000 young carers in this country. But this is likely to be just the tip of the iceberg as so many remain hidden from view of professionals. Many are forced to miss out on vital education because of day-to-day responsibilities for emotional, practical or physical care for a parent, sibling or other family member.

The three-year partnership between the prestigious charity-run arts festival and one of Britain’s largest children’s charities will see a minimum of £60k provided to support thousands of young carers through a national programme offering respite, life skills, advice and confidence-building.

The programme will also campaign to increase recognition and improve help for young carers among schools, doctors and local councils, to prevent children as young as three falling through the gaps in support.

The life-changing work will be boosted by money from tickets sales for this year’s Henley Festival which runs from 5 to the 10 July 2016.

The Children’s Society works directly with carers as young as ten, who take on adult responsibilities, for example managing household finances, administering medication and being an emotional support around the clock.

The Children’s Society Chief Executive Matthew Reed said: `We are thrilled that Henley Festival has chosen The Children’s Society for this important partnership. Young carers typically show enormous courage and resilience, but the impact on these children is real. It can leave them tired and isolated, struggling to socialise and complete school work on time. Children should not be plugging the gaps and taking on inappropriate caring responsibilities. We will make sure that young carers’ voices are heard, and that their lives are no longer hidden behind closed doors.'

Charlotte Geeves, CEO of the Henley Festival, said: `This tie up will let festival-goers know that when they come they’ll also be helping some of the most disadvantaged children and young people. The power of music and the arts can inspire and help give young carers valuable respite.

`We pride ourselves on supporting local and national charity projects through our grants scheme and are looking forward to working closer with The Children’s Society and the young carers that they support.'

For more information about the festival and for tickets please visit http://www.henley-festival.co.uk/

Ends

Media enquiries

For more information about the partnership, please call The Children’s Society’s media team on 020 7841 4422 or email media@childrenssociety.org.uk. For out-of-hours enquiries please call 07810 796 508

Notes to editor

There are 166,363 young carers in England, according to latest census data. More details: http://www.childrenssociety.org.uk/sites/default/files/tcs/report_hidden...
The Children’s Society is a national charity that runs local services, helping children and young people when they are at their most vulnerable, and have nowhere left to turn. We also campaign for changes to laws affecting children and young people, to stop the mistakes of the past being repeated in the future. Our supporters around the country fund our services and join our campaigns to show children and young people they are on their side.

Henley Festival, a registered charity, is a boutique event taking place over five days, celebrating the best of UK and international music and arts at a quintessential British location. It’s a place to soak up the atmosphere and be entertained whilst experiencing a vibrant programme from pop to world music, classical to jazz, blues to cutting edge new musicians, where art, comedy and gastronomy share equal billing with music. Through its ‘Arts Changing Lives’ grant-giving scheme, Henley Festival aims to widen access and participation in the arts, improve education and learning through the arts and make a demonstrable change to people’s lives through the arts.