If you are under 18 years old and your life is restricted in some way because you are helping to look after someone, you can also ask for a carers assessment.
What is a Young Carers Assessment?
If you or your parents request it, a social worker from your local council will carry out a Young Carers Assessment. Legally your local council has a duty to look at what responsibilities you’re taking on when caring for your relative or friend and how this could be affecting you.
The word “assessment” can sound scary but it shouldn’t be. A Young Carers Assessment is not a test of your abilities, but simply a conversation with a trained representative about you and your caring role to understand how caring affects your day-to-day life and work out whether you need any extra help.
The social worker will discuss your education, training, wellbeing, social life, leisure opportunities and your future goals It will help determine whether it’s appropriate for you to care for someone else and takes into account whether you want to be a Carer.
It will involve you, your parents and anyone else you or your parents want to be involved.
Am I eligible for a Young Carers Assessment?
All young Carers under 18 years old are usually entitled to a Young Carer’s Assessment.
It does not matter if you look after the person every day or only some of the time. It also does not matter if you do not look after the person directly as you might help by taking on additional household tasks or look after your brothers or sisters to allow another person in your family look after the person who needs care.
How do I request a Young Carers Assessment?
If you would like an assessment, you should get in touch with the Children’s Services department at your local authority.
Telephone: 01702 215007
Telephone: 01375 652802
What happens after the assessment?
You and any others involved in your assessment should receive a written record of it. This will include whether you are eligible for support and whether their services could provide you with it.
If they decide you need some additional help, they will create a support plan for you, outlining your support needs and how those needs can be met. It should also explain what you can do if you or your parents disagree with the assessment.
This support plan will then be reviewed regularly, at least once a year, to make sure it is working well.
What support could I get?
The person completing the assessment will have chat with you, the person you look after and possibly other members of your family to see what help is needed; this might include:
- Going to a Young Carers group with other Young Carers of a similar age to you
- Information, advice, and guidance from specialist staff
- Opportunities to have a break
- Support with issues at work, school or college
If you are a Young Carer and have not told anyone yet, please talk to someone you trust, this could be a teacher or your doctor as they will be able to contact someone who can help.