Charity of the Year - Update
Thu 22 October 2020
We are delighted to announce that we have decided to continue to support Gloucestershire Young Carers in 2021.
Gloucestershire Young Carers (GYC) has been supporting young carers, aged 8 to 24, for the past 27 years across the entire county. They currently have over 1000 young carers registered with them who may be caring for a parent, a sibling or other family member with a long-term illness, disability or experiencing mental ill health or problematic addiction. These are young people taking on adult responsibilities.
Their direct services include well-being groups; 1-2-1 support addressing individual issues; targeted services for young carers caring for someone with addiction problems and/or mental ill health; and fun respite activities that inspire and motivate. Their Young Adult Carer service provides one to and group support specifically for those aged 16 to 24 and they work to support statutory and voluntary agencies and community networks to improve their response to young carers by sharing information and good practice.
However, unfortunately, with the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, they had to stop their face to face work with young carers and instead direct efforts towards maintaining contact and support through on-line engagement including regular Zoom sessions and private Facebook groups which have been found to be hugely successful. As restrictions have eased and in line with national and local guidance, they have begun to undertake one to one work and are currently risk assessing group activities.
They have informed us that they have found that the impact of lockdown on young carers has been considerable with increased caring roles, anxiety around vulnerable loved ones, and lack of respite. They have seen an increase in the impact on the mental health of young carers during this time, and are anticipating that this will continue as an aftermath of the pandemic.
Bearing in mind the above, they need our support more than ever and we will shortly be announcing some fundraising events to finish 2020 and look forward to – Covid-19 permitting(!) – rescheduling the 8-person bike challenge next year.