Young Adult Carers are students aged 16 and over who care for a parent, sibling, or other relative on a regular basis. The person being cared for may have a physical disability, mental health illness, an addiction to drug and alcohol use or any other condition which requires them needing care, support and supervision. The Safeguarding Team can offer a range of support to Young Adult Carers whilst they are studying at NWRC.
What is an Adult Carer?
We understand that a lot of students are reluctant to declare their caring responsibilities, but we want to reassure students that if you tell us about your caring responsibilities we can help. We are aware the range and scale of caring responsibilities will of course vary for each Young Adult Carer but may include:
- Practical tasks, such as cooking, housework and shopping.
- Physical care, such as helping someone out of bed.
- Personal care, such as helping someone dress.
- Helping to give someone their medication
- Managing the family budget and collecting prescriptions.
- Helping someone communicate. Looking after brothers and sisters. Providing Emotional support.
College Support System
We have now introduced a new Young Adult Carer support system within the college, whereby we can ensure the early identification of Young Adult Carers in the college and implement support across their student journey so that they are more likely to remain in college, succeed and make a successful transition into higher education, further training, or employment.
With the new Young Adult Carer support system in place, it means that once a Young Adult Carer has been identified through either a referral, the application process or by simply reaching out to a member of the team, they will be contacted by the Carers Lead or Carers Support Officer by email or phone and invited for a one-to-one meeting, this meeting will be a Young Adult Carers opportunity to tell those involved in the process about the support they require that could potentially make their time at the college a bit easier for them.
Supporting Young Adult Carers
Individual Support Plan
This is where we will develop a Young Adult Carers Learning Support Plan specifically for the young adult carer which gathers more detailed information about the student's caring responsibilities such as who they care for, and what their responsibilities are but most importantly, how they think their caring responsibilities might affect their studies.
If a student identifies that they need additional support, the team puts together an individual Young Adult Carer learning support plan with the student incorporating the interventions and support they want. By having a support plan in place and carrying out an original assessment it will allow us to implement specific strategies that will support the young adult carer effectively, such as liaising with lecturers or signposting or referring students to local external agencies for specialist support.
Adult Carer Pass Card
One of the key elements of support which the college can offer is the Young Adult Carers Pass Card. When Young Adult Carers are identified in the college, they will be given a card which they can show to lecturers or other support staff. This helps staff to recognise that they may require additional support and flexibility around deadlines or time out of class etc. without having to explain their caring responsibilities multiple times. The team will also carry out a six week review of the learning support plan to see how things are going.
Overall, the focus on identifying young adult carers as early as possible and working with them to develop individualised learning and support plans means that they can access appropriate support from the start of their course, giving them the best possible chance of staying engaged, making progress, and achieving at NWRC.
For more information please contact the Young Adult Carers Team by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org