Volunteers wanted to help young carers

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West Sussex County Council is appealing for volunteers who can provide young carers with transport to their local youth group one evening a week during term time.

A young carer may have taken on responsibilities at home because someone in their family has a disability, has been ill for a long time, experiences mental ill health, or has a problem linked to drugs or alcohol.

Engaging in social activities and meeting other young carers can offer a valuable outlet, allowing them to build self-esteem, make friends and try new things.

Cllr Peter Evans, county council Cabinet Member for Children – Start of Life, said: “Getting out and about to social activities and groups can become problematic, because a young carer is unable to just rely on a lift from their parents.

“Thanks to our transport volunteers, young carers can take a break from the responsibilities they have at home and mixing with other young carers once a week can make a big difference, particularly to their self-confidence.”

Julie Baldwin, who volunteers every Monday evening, said: “The young people I transport live in quite an isolated area and there is no way they could get to the youth club without private transport.

“When they get in the car they often want to talk and talk - about anything and everything - so they clearly need an outlet and I’m happy to listen.”

For further information phone 01903 270300 or emailyoungcarers@westsussex.gov.uk.

The closing date for applications is Monday 13 April 2015.