Before my daughter attended the YMCA Young Adult Carers Project, she rarely left the house. Now, her confidence is growing and she is seeking help to find a job or a course. I know the YMCA will do their best to help her in any way they can.
Hannah is a 16 years old and is the sole carer for her Mum who suffers from mental illness. She was referred to us by the student welfare team at her college in Birmingham and when we met her it was clear she needed some support. Hannah lacked confidence and found it difficult to talk; her caring responsibilities were clearly affecting her self-esteem, college work and social life.
We worked with Hannah on a 1-2-1 basis offering her life coaching and support and a dedicated contact if ever she needed to speak to someone when feeling under pressure. With the help of life coaching,
Hannah began to set herself goals, recognizing the need to improve her self-belief and self-esteem.
We turned a real corner when Hannah felt able to confide in us about her financial concerns which were also a real worry for her Mum and were exacerbated due to Hannah being in full time education. Working closely with the College, we were able to secure additional financial support for help with travel and food, small things that would make a big difference to Hannah being able to continue her studies and plan for her future.
As with many Young Carers who don’t want to make a fuss or ask for help, Hannah’s college were not aware of her caring role and Hannah wasn’t aware of the support available. We see all too often Young Carers who don’t recognize that they fulfil a caring role or who try to go it alone and are too afraid to ask for help.
Hannah’s case has helped raise awareness about Young Adult Carers in the college and we now have a referral system in place so that we can support other students who are in a caring role. Though 1-2-1 support, we were able to prevent Hannah from reaching crisis, giving her and her Mum hope of a brighter future for them both.
Help a Young Carer like Hannah today. £10 per month could pay for a regular respite session for an isolated young carer. Donate now.