If you are under 18 years old and care for someone, you can get support as a young carer.
You can tell us if you’re concerned about a young person who is providing care for someone, by completing our online form.
Check if you're a young carer
You're a young carer if you’re under 18 and regularly look after someone who is mentally or physically unwell, disabled or struggling with addiction.
You might be caring for a parent, grandparent, brother or sister and doing things like:
- helping them to get dressed or washed
- helping around the house
- looking after brothers or sisters
- giving emotional support
- managing the family budget
- collecting prescriptions and helping to give the medicine
- helping someone communicate
Types of support
If you’re finding things hard or your caring responsibilities are impacting your mental wellbeing or getting in the way of your education, there are ways we can support you.
We will do an assessment to find out what help you need. We call this a young carer's assessment.
We can suggest things that will make life easier for you, so that you can carry on helping your family, if you want to.
When we complete the assessment with you, we might recommend things like:
- practical help in the home
- access to a young carers group
- holidays or the opportunity to take a break from caring
- help with food shopping or meal deliveries
Other services may be recommended, depending on what you need.
How the assessment works
We do an assessment to understand your situation and what you might need help with.
A social worker will make an appointment to visit you at home. They'll talk to you, your parents or guardians, other family and the person being cared for.
You’ll be asked questions about your:
- physical and mental health
- emotional development
- social development
- behavioural development
- family and social relationships
- education and how things are going at school or college
- religious or cultural needs
We may talk to other people such as your family doctor or your teacher.
If we need more information, we may arrange a more detailed assessment (called a core assessment).
The assessment will be completed against the national eligibility criteria.
We'll decide straight away if you should get support and what type of support you need.
If we do think you should have some extra help, we will put in place a support plan.
If we have care or support plans in place for other members of your family, this might be combined with them to make one document, or it might be kept separate.
We may also provide information about other support services that could be helpful such as young carer groups. We will regularly review your support to make sure it is working well.
If you’re not happy with our decision, we will provide you with information about our appeals process.
You’ll need to contact our Children's First Contact Service (CFCS) to arrange a young carers assessment.
You can ask someone you know to contact us for you. This could be a friend or relative, a teacher, or your family doctor. Don't be afraid to ask, it is important to get the help you need.
0208 770 6001
Complete the online referral form
CFCS referral form (Google form)