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More support for young adults who care

More support for young adults who care

Published at 7:31am 17th April 2015. (Updated at 7:35pm 17th April 2015)

Businesses in Harrogate are being urged to show their support for the district's young adult carers.

Many 16 to 25-year-olds who look after a loved one have been targeting firms directly, after receiving support from a local charity.

The Carers' Resource Young Adult Carer project aims to empower, educate and celebrate young adult carers.

It involves a range of activities, including CV writing, help to find work, education or training, and support in overcoming mental health issues, as well as social events.

Hettie Flynn, from Carers' Resource, said: "The impact the project has had on young people's lives in a short period of time has been phenomenal.

"They have become so empowered and positive that the young adult carers are now taking ownership and going out and approaching businesses and organisations to gain support for young adult carers overall."

They helped to negotiate a 25% off deal for carers under 25 at Rossett Sports Centre in Harrogate and are also working towards setting up a support group at Harrogate College.

Sophie Wilson, 22, said: "The help and encouragement I've had from Hettie has been ace, she's amazing.

"I was so used to being a carer that I thought it was just normal and she has helped me realise that I can think of myself and put my own needs first.

"It's wonderful to know that there is support out there and to also know that I'm not on my own.

"I can be myself and I don't have to explain everything to other young adult carers as they understand where I'm coming from.

"It's been great for helping boost my confidence and self-esteem and I can't thank Hettie and Carers' Resource enough."

Carers' Resource Director Anne Smyth added: "There is increasing interest nationally in supporting young adult carers and, importantly, in preventing them from caring inappropriately.

"We know much more about young carers than about young adult carers - they form a discrete but growing group who fit neither into younger children's services nor into full adult care and support.

"Carers' Resource is delighted to be running one of the very few projects nationally specifically to support them."

The charity, which supports around 12,000 carers, is now hoping to extend the service into Craven.

Hettie Flynn said: "Some parts of these areas are rural and isolation and loneliness can be an issue, but we hope that with the use of Skype and Facebook we will be able to help overcome these challenges."

Pictured: Luke Scaife, Laura Frith, Ryan Griffiths, Hettie Flynn, Lauren Trott and James Watts enjoying a game of table football at The Pit, Harrogate