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Young Carers - Parents Page

Raising Awareness of Young Carers 

There are, on average, two young carers in every classroom in every school in the UK. One of those carers will be having difficulties in their education because of their home situation.


The definition of a Young Carer is anyone under the age of 18 who provides unpaid help and support to someone with a long term physical disability or mental health condition or problems with drugs and alcohol. Sometimes, the person they care for wouldn’t not able to function without their physical or emotional help. 

Research released in September 2018 BBC News and the University of Nottingham suggests there could be about 800,000 children who are young carers in England. 


  • That is around one in five children aged 11 – 17 and an estimated 14,000 in Surrey.

  • Half of young carers report that their caring role has a negative effect on their school work.

  • Young carers leave school with the equivalent of 9 GCSE grades lower than their peers who have not caring role.

  • One study reported that a half of the carers surveyed had missed school because of their caring role and a quarter had left without any GCSEs.

  • A quarter of young carers said they were bullied at school because of their caring role.

  • Young carers can feel tired during lessons because of the support they are giving during the evening and night or early hours of the morning, disproportionally responsible for things, guilty for the things they can’t fix, anxious, stressed and isolated because of the role they play within the family.

These barriers can appear while a pupil is in infant school, and can persist into adulthood, restrict opportunities for further and higher education and employment. 


What role do Young Carers play within the family

They may be supporting by having extra responsibilities on top of what would be considered normal by an average household.  This could be things like: 


  • doing all the laundry

  • mopping floors partially bathrooms

  • making meals or beds for other people in the family

  • helping to ensure family members get to bed

  • watching over family members for periods of time

  • helping to fill out forms

  • managing bills or budgets

  • supporting family members at the doctors or hospital

  • helping get family members ready, making sure they are alright and reassuring them everything is going to be ok

  • translating for individuals who experience communication difficulties

  • collecting prescriptions and / or giving medication 


Multi-ethnic Group of Friends

Support Available

With the right support, being a young career brings benefits, and many express pride in their role. That support is available from Surrey Young Carers. SYC works with young people aged 5 to 18 who care for someone else and support their families, by proving support and creating opportunities for them to socialise with others in similar positions to themselves.



Telephone: 01483 568269


SYC also has a service for Young Adult Carers (YACs) aged 18-24 and they can be contacted on 01483 568269.


As a family, you can find further help from 


  • your local GP



Every year, we train to do a Charity Bike Ride as part of our P.E. curriculum to raise money for Action for Carers (Surrey) is a registered charity based at Astolat, Coniers Way, Burpham, Guildford GU4 7HL and Surrey Young Carers is part of this organisation. The money we raise goes to support these carers.


Declaration of Interest

Orchard Training’s charity of choice is Action for Cares (Surrey) because I am a trustee for this charity. 

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