Things you need to know about young carers

There are probably more young carers out there than you think. They take on extra responsibilities, like dressing the person they look after, cooking, cleaning, shopping, collecting prescriptions. It's a lot to take on as a child. 

Did you know...

facts about young carers


young carers aged 5-17 care for an adult or family member in the UK


of young carers aged 11-15 miss school

Being a young carer

girl looks after her mother

Facts about young carers

By definition, young carers are under the age of 18, but there is no lower age limit. We have worked with those as young as five years old but there could be carers who are even younger. 

Growing up should be about exploring and finding out who you are. But for young carers who have to look after a loved one, it's a little more tricky.

Having to care for someone can often mean missing school or having to bail on friends. It can put their childhood on the back burner. Many young carers, and the people around them, don't even realise they're carers. 

39% said nobody in their school was even aware of their caring responsibilities

girl smiling in front of brick wall

Make sure
you live
for yourself
Make sure you live for yourself

Caring for themselves

Over one third have a mental health issue

Carers provide vital support for their loved ones, whether this is for physical or mental health problems. However, their own mental health is often overlooked.

Even before the pandemic, over one third of young carers reported having a mental health problem. Now, due to the added stress and worry brought on by Covid-19, more young carers are struggling with their well-being

Something else that needs more attention is support as they move into adulthood.

Only 13% are properly supported into adulthood

The transition assessment is a legal requirement under the Care Act (2014). It is there to take into account the changes in support needed when a young carer moves from childhood to adulthood. However, 87% of young carers do not receive this assessment. 

The assessment would allow them to consider future options such as going to university or college, getting more training, doing an apprenticeship or apply for paid employment.

Help for young carers

girl speaks to a councillor

Supporting young carers

Many young people cope well with caring. But equally it is important for all young carers to know there are places where they can get help.

If you know a young carer or work with young carers, we have advice on everything to help them grow up healthy, happy and focused on their futures.

To learn that other people were going through the same thing was amazing