Today is Carers Rights day, and as Children’s Commissioner I want to recognise the tireless work carried out by the estimated one million young carers across England. Over the course of this year, I have championed the needs of young carers, calling for everyone working with children to improve the support they offer to young carers and make sure their needs are recognised.
This has included calling for all schools to implement a young carers policy co-written with young carers at the school, for young carers to receive support from their local Virtual School Head, and for all services to improve how they identify young carers and provide support to them and their family.
I have also provided resources for schools to help them to support their young carers, from what they need to know about the upcoming changes to the School Census to supporting year six young carers transition to secondary school.
For young carers it can be even harder to find out about your rights as a lot of information online is designed for adults. The Carers Trust have created a helpful guide for young carers and young adult carers in England which is a great place to start. The Children’s Society has also created a map to help young carers find local support including young carers projects. I have brought these resources and others together through my Back Into School webpage for children and young people.
I will continue to champion the rights of young carers right across government to make sure that they receive the support they have a right to, to help them achieve their ambitions.