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December 2022 Newsletter - Young Carers

In this update

  • Carers Passport launches in Plymouth
  • Barnardo's Young Carers Service
  • Young Carers and Young Adult Carers Survey 2022
  • Useful links

Welcome to our latest newsletter, which we hope you find useful and informative. If there's a colleague or another provider in your network that you think would like to receive the newsletter, please feel free to forward it onto them.

Please let us know if you have anything you would like us to share or publicise in a future issue.


Carers Passport launches in Plymouth

A new Family and Friend Carer's Passport has been launched in Plymouth to recognise and value the support carers provide.

A carer is anyone who cares, unpaid, for a family or friend who needs help and support due to illness, disability, a mental health condition or an addiction.

"Mentally, emotionally, 24/7 your thoughts are with them and their needs and what you might be having to do or will need to do or what you didn't do.... if the carers card works well, it will break down quite a lot of barriers. I do believe it will acknowledge the role and hopefully increase the two-way information sharing and the openness of professionals to speak with the carers about the things that worry them...put simply, it will make life slightly less fraught......if the carer breaks down, who's going to do the caring?"

Carer of an adult son who has a serious mental illness, Plymouth

The passport has been launched by health and social care partners across the city including, Livewell Southwest, University Hospital's Plymouth NHS Trust, Plymouth City Council, Improving Lives Plymouth and St Luke's. It highlights the expertise carers bring and the needs they have in terms of their health and welfare.

"We know that unpaid carers of family or friends routinely neglect their health, and care needs, and prioritise the needs of the person they care for. By working together across organisations, we are committing to helping carers access the support they need to keep themselves in good physical and mental wellbeing. This will enable them to maintain their caring role and, when appropriate, help them to relinquish some aspects of their caring role."

Dr Ed Parry-Jones, GP, Clinical Advisor for One Devon and member of Plymouth Carer's Strategic Partnership

The new Carers Passport comprises an A5 booklet with information about caring and a credit card-sized Carer Identification card. This will provide:

  • A recognisable way for carers to identify their caring role in health, social care and other organisations
  • Discounts at participating businesses
  • Access to information and support to help with caring
  • An opportunity to connect with other carers
  • An emergency alert card
  • Some discounts in healthcare settings, depending on circumstances

The Carers' Passport also aims to give the Carer the confidence to talk with health and social care staff about the person they care for and are actively encouraged to show the Carers Card to professionals to let them know they are a carer. However, it should not be seen as 'proof' and all appropriate checks with the cared for person should be undertaken to ensure their confidentiality is not breached.

The Council's commissioned service for adult carers in Plymouth is called Caring for Carers, run by Improving Lives Plymouth, and provides a range of advice, guidance, help and support for unpaid carers.  

There is also help and support for the 800-plus young carers in Plymouth which is delivered by Time 4 U, a partnership between children's charity Barnardo's, Hamoaze House and the City Council's Youth Services Team.

To request a carers passport residents will first need to register with Caring for Carers in any of the following ways:

Carers that are already registered with Caring for Carers will automatically receive a passport in the post.

To find out more, please watch our short video.

"If I'm being honest, it kind of sucks being a young carer because I want to live my life as a normal 18-year-old......What it'll mean for people like me is better recognition, especially for young male carers, as we face a lot of obstacles because of the stigma of having a role like this in today's society. Useful phone numbers and information at your fingertips will be great as I need a lot more help figuring out what I'm supposed to do for my mum as well as me. Discounts in certain stores will also be good as a lot of young carers and their parents can't afford to buy certain important stuff.'"

Young carer, Plymouth


Barnardo's Young Carers Service

BYCS supported a group of young carers to attend a dental workshop facilitated by Peninsula Dental School.

The dental students created and set up a series of interactive stations for young carers to increase their awareness of oral health. We went to the dental facility in Devonport to make it a more realistic experience for them.

Young carers were able to role-play being a patient and a dentist, using PPE and sitting in a dental chair to reduce any anxiety around attending a dentist. They also learned about the morphology of teeth, the impact of a high-sugar diet on teeth and what effective tooth cleaning and self-care look like.

In preparation for this workshop, the students completed our joint carer awareness training to learn more about what a young carer is and how they could contribute to identifying and supporting any young carers they may come into contact with within their clinics.

The feedback from young carers was positive and they told us that they enjoyed learning about this subject and liked how interactive the stations were. As they moved around in small groups, they got time to talk and connect with the dental students. Young carers were given a goodie bag to take away which included a toothbrush, toothpaste, a timer and some information to share with their families. 

It's important to raise aspirations in young carers within our work with them and exposing young carers to a variety of professions could widen their thoughts about what they might like to be when they're older. The dental students were able to answer questions about what it is like training to be in the dental field which may encourage them to think about if it's something of interest to them.


Young Carers and Young Adult Carers Survey 2022

This survey is for young carers and young adult carers who live in the UK.

A young carer is someone aged under 18 who cares for a friend or family member who, due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an alcohol or substance misuse problem, cannot cope without the young carer's support.

Young adult carers are aged 25 and under, who may have different support needs to young carers as they become adults.

How you describe yourself is personal. This survey is still for you, even if you don't call yourself a young carer or a young adult carer.

Take part in the survey and share your thoughts


Share your stories with us

Do you have any good news stories or information that you would like to share with the wider Young Carers Network in Plymouth?

Please email with your suggestions.

We'd love to share all the amazing things you are doing!


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This page was last updated on 1 December 2022.

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