Gloucestershire Young Carers support young carers by:
- Providing direct services in partnership with a raft of other organisations
- Working with young carers to support professionals and commissioners to improve their response to young carers
For Young Carers:
(click on the arrows to read more)Assessment and Support Planning
All young carers referred to GYC are offered an assessment visit preferably in the family home, or alternatively at school or college or any other appropriate venue.
At the visit our Young Carer and Family Locality Worker, in discussion with the young person and their family, will assess the young person’s needs as a young carer, the support they require and develop a plan of support. The plan might include: information and advice; helping family members to access the services they need to reduce the amount and impact or caring on the young person; access to services provided by GYC or other agencies; working with education, doctors and other agencies to ensure ‘joined up’ support for the young carer.
(This work is jointly commissioned by the Gloucestershire County Council and Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning group as part of their commitment to carers.)
We work with young carers to develop information and resources that can help young people understand their situation, how to look after themselves, and how to get further help.
Participation is pivotal to the work of GYC. We work with young carers to ensure that they have a ‘Voice’, are heard and can influence services and policies that affect themselves and their families. We do this through:
- Young Carers Forum –generic young carer forum representing all young carers and linking with the Gloucestershire Carers Alliance
- ‘yCHIPS’ – specialist Forum for young carers caring for someone affected by substance misuse and/or mental illness, currently working with Gloucestershire Constabulary, the University of Gloucestershire and Change, Grow, Live
- YACtion – young adult carer (YAC) steering group – leading the YAC service
- Young Carers Newsletter – produced 3 times a year by young carers for young carers
- Annual Gloucestershire Young Carers Conference – young carer workshops informing practitioners and commissioners on how to improve their response to young carers
- One-off opportunities for young carer to tell their story to decision makers to influence policy and service delivery
- Media opportunities
- ‘Caring Counts’ – health and well being course.
Delivered in localities, this course is the initial offer to all young carers aged 11+ bringing a group of around 12 young carers together. The course enables young carers:
- to share their experiences
- learn how to look after their own well being;
- find out ways of coping with their caring situation and build resilience;
- learn about the support that is available to them
- have some fun and make new friends
Where the waiting time for a course is long, or where a group situation does not meet the young person’s needs, a member of GYC Youth Work Team will undertake a one to one session with the young person covering some of these issues.
- Countywide Respite Support Groups
We run weekly or fortnightly respite support groups during term time for juniors aged 8–11 , and seniors aged 12 – 16. The groups run in localities across the county. Young carers can:
- enjoy activities in a safe environment with other young people who share similar experiences and feelings
- talk to workers with whom they have built a trusting relationship
- increase their understanding and build resilience
- learn from sessions exploring different issues and promoting healthy lifestyles
- be supported to build self-esteem, develop coping strategies and maintain their emotional well-being
- Short Breaks
We organise day and residential trips where young carers can enjoy time away with other young people who share similar family circumstances. These offer access to new activities which challenge and inspire. We work closely with the local community and corporate organisations to enable these events to happen.
- ‘Us Too’:
Support group for children and young people living with someone who experiences mental ill health
‘Us Too’ is a closed, time limited support group for children who are facing difficulties with coping with the impact of a family member’s mental ill health. Its objectives are:
- to provide a safe space where group members can identify and express their feelings
- to reduce the sense of isolation by sharing experiences and views with others in similar circumstances
- to enhance self-esteem and confidence
- to help the young people to gain a greater understanding of mental health and mental illness
- to help them make sense of the impact of the illness on the family
- to support the development of coping strategies
- Service for Young Substance Misuse Carers (funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and Police and Crime Commissioner’s Fund)
- ‘So We Know’ weekend camps
- Day workshops for young carers
- Parent and Young Carers Days
- yCHIPS Forum (Young Carers Helping Inform Professionals)
- Young person friendly information
- 1 to 1 support
- Young Adult Carers Service
One to one support and group programmes for young adult carers 16 to 24 years.
- ‘One to One’ support from GYC Youth Work Scheme
Short term support addressing issues for individual young carers as they arise. Working to an agreed, time limited plan. Issues may include confidence building, self-esteem or linking in with more specialist services such as counselling.
Matching up young carers with an adult befriender on a planned, short term programme: building new experiences, building confidence and enabling young carers to activities within the local community.
Young carer led training and workshops on a range of issues related to young carers and their families.
Enabling commissioners to hear directly from young carers to inform their allocation of resources.
Partnership working with statutory, voluntary and community agencies across the county and beyond.