September 9th, 2013
Young carers in Surrey have been major contributors to a new national guide for professionals on personalisation launched nationally on 5th September at a conference held on the South Bank in London.
LAUNCH OF "MAKING IT REAL FOR YOUNG CARERS"
Young carers in Surrey have been major contributors to a new national guide for professionals on personalisation launched nationally on 5th September at a conference held on the South Bank in London. The guide aims to help organisations check their progress and decide what they need to do to keep moving forward to deliver real change and positive outcomes for young carers.
Following on the publication of “Making it Real for Carers” by national carers charity the Carers Trust earlier this year, young carers in Surrey said that there should be a version looking specifically at their needs. So young carers from the Surrey Young Carers service worked with members of the Making it Real for Carers project team- part of the Think Local, Act Personal initiative- and a graphic designer to illustrate all the things young carers wanted to say. They used a lively presentation format to highlight the issues which young carers consider to be most important to improve the quality of their lives.
In a special interview for the event, Edward Timpson, Minister for Children and Families, said: “Young carers feel supported when there is good communication - not just in services, but in conversations. That’s how you get a really personalised approach that can give them what they need.”
The interview with the Minister was undertaken by a former young carer and was broadcast on 6th September as part of a special programme about the launch on the internet based Carers World Radio.
This idea of co-design, with young carers being involved right at the heart of the process, is one that Surrey Young Carers are keen to promote to all professionals who work with young carers as well as those who both commission and design services to support them.
“From the conception of ’Making It Real for Young Carers’ over 100 young carers from Surrey have been involved in the co-design, with the project team attending Surrey Young Carers events to ensure the creative ideas and views of young carers informed the final publication. We are really proud to have been involved from start to finish and hope this national resource enables real change to the way professionals work alongside young carers”, says the manager of the Surrey Young Carers service, Michelle Harper.
Russell Minns, a former young carer, now an Apprentice with Surrey Young Carers, is co-chairing the launch event of the guide, and also interviewed the Minister (see above). He comments “This is fantastic news for young carers. Hopefully now professionals working with us will understand how we feel and what they can do to help us. Even if it’s one small thing, it still would help”.
Making it Real for Young Carers is available to download from www.thinklocalactpersonal.org.uk