Caring Counts is our health & wellbeing programme for young carers aged 11+. Whereas many of our services rightly focus on respite, fun and having time away from your caring role, it is at our Caring Counts course where we really focus on the strengths and challenges of being a young carer.
The sessions run across two days and comprise of a range of workshops, games and activities. They are usually based at our office in Twigworth, and the young people are often apprehensive at first coming to a new place to join an unknown group! But by the end of the first day they are laughing, feeling relaxed and swapping contact numbers.
During the sessions we look at: what it means to be a young carer, how this might impact our ability to study and socialise and how it might affect our physical and mental health. We learn how to keep ourselves healthy, manage stress and develop coping strategies through the lens of the ‘five ways to wellbeing’.
On the second day we have a healthy eating lunch which includes trying some new unusual fruits – the last group requested dragon fruit which even the staff members had never tried - we also learnt how to crack a coconut!
Caring counts is run throughout the year with different age groups and there is a special programme run for sibling carers. We are excited that our next cohort will be the 50th one since we first developed and delivered the programme!
Some feedback from the most recent group (pictured) which was the transition group for the new year 7s.
‘It has made me realise that I’m not alone and everyone is going through the same thing’
‘It has helped me learn how to improve my wellbeing’.
‘It’s helped my mental health’
‘Helped me express my feelings’
‘It has been a full-on adventure - at first I didn’t want to come but now I’ve done it I feel so much better about being a young caregiver’
October 16, 2023