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Mansfield And Ashfield Young Carers Take Time Out For Activity Session Boost

7th June 2017
News, Mansfield, Ashfield

Mansfield and Ashfield young carers are benefitting from help, advice and activities at sessions funded by Nottinghamshire County Council and health partners which aim to give them a break from their caring duties.

The Council is promoting the activity groups during this Carers Week (w/c 12 June), which are run by The Carers Trust East Midlands in Mansfield and Ashfield.

Sessions are held at the Lammas Leisure Centre in Sutton-in-Ashfield and the Mansfield Folkhouse Young People’s Centre by the Carer’s Trust and activities include bowling, archery and ice skating.

They take place during school holidays and after school hours and aim to offer young carers information, support and fun activities as well as providing an opportunity for them to meet other young people in a similar situation.

The Council and health partners are investing £50,000 in the sessions across five Nottinghamshire districts.

Mackenzie Shaw, 15 from Sutton-in-Ashfield, has been attending the sessions for a year. She said: “I’ve made friends with other young carers and we share tips as they are also carers. I like the skating trips the best but the sessions can be educational as we have also done a first aid course.

“My brother has autism, ADHD and epilepsy and I’m now helping out more as my older sister has gone to university so it’s good to have time doing fun stuff.”

Ashton Lang, aged nine from Mansfield, has also attended the sessions for the last year. He said: “I like all the activities and I’ve made lots of friends. I help my mum get around places and we can’t always do the stuff we do here.”

Young carers may also be eligible for additional support which can help them with activities outside caring. Young carers have been helped to purchase equipment such as laptops or supported to take part in sporting activities.

Councillor Stuart Wallace, Chair of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Adult Social Care and Health Committee, said: “Young carers often feel isolated as most of their school friends don’t have the same responsibilities so these sessions are a great way for them to gain friends who are in a similar position to themselves.

“It’s also important for young carers to enjoy their childhood and these sessions give them time away from their caring duties and take part in activities that they may not be able to do with their families.”

Around £6.3m was spent on supporting all carers in Nottinghamshire in 2016/17, which includes £4.3m from the County Council.

Adult carers may be eligible for a personal budget to be used towards items or activities to support them in caring or promote their wellbeing. Carers have been helped to purchase gardening or household equipment, or supported with college courses or healthy activities such as gym attendance.

Short breaks are also available to give carers time away from their caring duties along with a crisis prevention service to help carers in an emergency such as going into hospital.

The Council assessed over 7,000 carers in 2016/17 and around 70 percent were offered a personal budget or NHS funded short break.

Around 3,200 local carers have benefitted from help and support from the Nottinghamshire Carers Hub, which was launched August 2015 and is funded by the Council and the local NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups.

To find out more about help and support available to Nottinghamshire carers contact the Nottinghamshire Carers Hub on 0115 824 8824 or visit http://www.carerstrustem.org/hub


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