Carers Week Competition
Making Carers Visible
Carers Week is a national campaign to celebrate, recognise and raise awareness of Carers of all ages throughout the U.K. This year’s Carers Week was the week beginning Monday 8th June.
The theme of Carers Week 2020 was ‘making caring visible’. In aid of this we ran a special competition for young carers. The task was to create a poster that helps carers and young carers be seen, noticed and understood. We had several fantastic entries, and are delighted to showcase the winner and runner up below.
First Place: Corey, age 12
Second Place: Eric, age 13
Thank you to everyone who sent in an entry! You can find details about our upcoming young carer competitions here
‘What I am grateful for’
We’re excited to share the first and second place entries for June’s Young Carers Competition. Young carers were asked to share ‘what I am grateful for during lockdown’, in whatever way they liked – a poem, picture, film, photo, or something else they had created.
First Place: Eric, age 13
Second Place: Jennifer, age 10
Carers Week Competition:
We’re delighted to announce the first and second place entries for a special Carers Week Competition here
May: What I can see from my window
First Place: Ava, age 9
Out of my window I can see…
Green trees blowing in the wind
A summer house for me and Ivy
Ready for lunch, lets eat outside
Dragonflys flying through the sky
even when we say goodbye
Next time is another day, then we will have time to play
Second place: ‘Outside my Window’ by Eric, age 13
As the sun shines on all our faces,
Waking us up each morning,
The cars wait to be driven
But they find themselves alone,
The smiles of the children’s faces makes us want to get out,
But as Corona made its way,
We start to stay away,
From all dangers that could possibly harm us,
But as lockdown is soon ending,
Bringing happiness and hope to people’s faces.
When the warm sun get cooler,
We start to get colder.
From trees swaying side to side,
Following the gentle cold breeze,
As the sun starts setting,
Our frustration shrinks,
The later the day arrives,
The more we feel tired.
When the sky gets dark,
And the stars appear,
The moon will rise with it’s attracting light,
The trees are now still as a bone,
While we tuck into our warm beds,
Outside my window,
There is nothing but cars.
We would like to say THANK YOU to everyone who took part – we were blown away by entries, and the panel had a difficult time deciding!
Details on June’s competition here
April: experiences of lockdown
First Place: ‘Shielding’ by Freya, age 9
My little sister got a letter saying she must shield,
No going to the park or taking the dog to the field.
I couldn’t go to school or do my sports club,
No more going for lunch in the pub.
Feels strange that I can’t go to school,
No going on holiday and laying by the pool.
Spending more time with my family will be fun,
Playing in the garden and laying in the sun.
Learning to grow fruit and veg from a seed,
we will have all the healthy food that we need.
Thanks to the NHS who are helping the sick,
Stay home everyone so this will end quick.
Second Place: ‘My Wish’ by Izzy, age 6
Virtual Book Club
Introducing…. NEW Young Carers Virtual Book Club
We’re really excited to launch our first Young Carers Book Club! In these strange times what better than to lose yourself in a different world/life/story?
Each month we will share our book pick with you… you can then email in your book reviews, telling us what you liked/what you didn’t like about the story.
We would also LOVE to be able to have a virtual meet-up for young carers (registered with us) who are interested in discussing the book with other people and ‘meet’ other young carers. If you are interested in joining a virtual meet up (via Zoom) please do let us know by emailing young.carers@Carersinherts.org.uk We can then send you the date of the e-meet up and you can book on.
Book Club, age 8 – 12
May’s book pick is: ‘The Boy at the Back of the Class’ by Onjali Rauf.
It is available on Kindle for £3.99, to buy paper back through Amazon £5.94 (and in a 2 for £7 offer), or listen on Audible for free (with a months trial on Amazon). You can find these all here. You can read a plot description here.
You may be able to borrow the book for free if you have an account with Hertfordshire Libraries Service – more information here
Deadline for reviews: Wednesday 27th May
E-meet up: Friday 29th May – times TBC
Book Club, age 13+
May’s book pick is: ‘Toffee’ by Sarah Crossan.
It is available on Kindle for £4.83, to buy paper back through Amazon £6.40, or listen on Audible for free (with a months trial on Amazon). You can find these all here.
You can read a plot description here
You may be able to borrow the book for free if you have an account with Hertfordshire Libraries Service – more information here
Deadline for reviews: Friday 29th May
E-meet up: W/b 1st June
Please note that this book has themes of domestic abuse in, as well as someone living with dementia.
It’s Competition Time again! June 2020
After a brilliant round of April and May entries, we’re excited to ask you to share “what I’m grateful for”. This could be:
- A picture you have drawn
- A photo you have taken (with a caption)
- Pictures of stuff you have created (with a caption)
- A story / poem / piece of writing
- Anything else inspired by the theme
There are prizes to be won … £20 voucher for 1st Place and £10 for 2nd!
The deadline for entry is Friday 19th June 5pm Winning entries to be announced the following week!
Please email your entries to young.carers@Carersinherts.org.uk . Please put ‘competition’ in the subject, and include your name and age in the email.
You can check out previous months winners and runner ups here
We know that the coming weeks will be a challenge for a lot of us; spending more time at home and away from others. Whether we are social distancing, in self-isolation or shielding, below are some resources to help keep us busy, healthy and feeling good.
We will continue to update this, so please do share with us any suggestions you may have.
Mental health and wellbeing
- Tips for parents of anxious young carers when talking about Coronavirus
- Young Minds resources & ideas about things adults and young people can do to manage stress & anxiety they may experience in relation to coronavirus:
They also have a mental health advice line available for parents operating between
09:30am-4pm, Monday- Friday: 0808 802 5544
- Young Minds link on how to look after your mental health when self-isolating:
- Joe Wicks ‘The Body Coach’ live P.E lesson every day 9 a.m on YouTube. Suitable for all ages and abilities.
- Herts Sports Partnership have a great list of different ways to get the whole family moving. Follow the link and scroll down, includes Kids Yoga, Disney Dance-Along and Premier League Primary Stars: https://sportinherts.org.uk/coronavirus/#
- Online Safety guides for parents of primary and secondary aged children: https://thinkuknow.co.uk/professionals/our-views/parents-helpsheets/
- ‘Scouts: The Great Indoors’: Includes activities for age 6 – 14 year olds
- E-books: Audible are providing all children’s books for free
- Travel the world’s museums from your sofa:
- Science experiments, Key Stage 1 – Key Stage 4:
Due to the ongoing situation with COVID-19 and the government’s advice to avoid social contact we are having to re-think the ways in which we support young carers and their families. We appreciate that for many of you and your families the current situation and weeks/months ahead are going to be unsettling, worrying and very challenging. If you need to talk through this, or the impact it will have on your caring role, please do get in touch. Whilst we cannot meet in person Carers in Hertfordshire is still here for you, and for adult carers too.
Avoiding social contact unfortunately means that our upcoming activities have had to be cancelled or postponed. This includes activities in the Easter break and May half term, and we are contacting these families directly. We recognise that the situation is constantly changing, and we will do our best to keep you updated as we know more about activities and events beyond May half term.
Whilst this is a challenging time it gives us a new opportunity to work with young carers in a different way, and we are excited to be planning a range of virtual and online activities. This will help us to keep in touch with you, give you new ways of getting involved in our activities whilst helping you to keep busy at home. Please watch this space and visit www.ycih.org/activities-for-young-carers for updates. We will also be publishing a list of other resources and top tips for this time.
Although we are unable to complete home visits throughout this period we will continue to reach out to families using a variety of technology, including telephone calls, Zoom and Whatsapp. If we are video-calling young carers it is important that a parent is aware of this and present in the house at the time of the call. We will call familiest to arrange a mutually convenient time.
We will update this page with new information and any changes to our service to keep you informed. We hope you and your families stay safe and well.
Young Carers Awareness Day 2020
This Young Carers Awareness Day (Thursday 30th January 2020) we’re hoping to reach out to young carers and those who support them, such as school and college staff, to let them know “You are not alone”. We want to highlight the services available to help ease their caring role.
Young Carers Awareness Day celebrates, recognizes, and raises awareness about young carers in the UK. The focus this year is getting school and compulsory education providers to do more to identify and support young carers – people under 19 providing unpaid care to a relative or someone who is ill, disabled, elderly, or misuses drugs or alcohol.
To tie in with the theme and the Carers Trust’s Count Me In campaign, we are holding a training and network event for staff from Hertfordshire schools to learn about our services and also how they can be involved in the Carers Trust Young Carers in Schools Ambassadors Project that we are part of.
We are also launching the first items of our updated publicity material – a poster and postcard – which young carers helped produce, with input from Hertfordshire County Council, which commissions us to support young carers.
The key message on them, which young carers identified is telling young carers “you are not alone.” The poster and postcard contain our contact details and information about how we support young people in a caring role such as providing activities so they can meet other young cares and have a break from caring, a discount card to save money when shopping or out and opportunities to have their say about health and other services.
The poster and postcards can be viewed or downloaded at http://ycih.org/information-for-professionals/ and
As part of the day we have also asked young carers accessing our services who their biggest supporter is. Most responses were a parent or parents, Nan or sibling, with Mum being the most popular. Other supporters included teachers, a social worker, and even books and music. Here are some of the reasons:
- “My Mum is my biggest supporter as she is encouraging and enthusiastic.”
- Grace said: “My form tutor is my best supporter because whenever I am having a bad day she asks if I’m okay or if I need to step out of the classroom for a minute. She is helpful, if I tell her something I’m struggling with she will tell my other teachers for that day, which means I don’t have to explain it to every teacher.”
Laura Green, one of the Young Carers Service Team Leaders, said: “Through our work and events such as Young Carers Awareness Day we hope to let young carers know about the help on offer to them, to show they are not alone in their caring role. We also want to improve peoples’ understanding of young carers and the impact that caring can have upon a child or young person. Providing the right support and information to young carers can help them feel physically and mentally well.”
Currently, there are 1,975 young carers in Hertfordshire or elsewhere that support someone in the county registered with us. Last year we provided one to one support to 340 young carers and their families and for about half of them our involvement helped reduce their caring role.
You can help us make a positive difference to the lives of adult and child carers by volunteering or supporting us through fundraising, such as making a donation online via https://localgiving.org/charity/carersinherts/
Whatever you do to mark Young Carers Awareness Day 2020, we would love to know or you can tell us about who your biggest supporter is. You can share tweets @ycherts using the hashtag #YoungCarersAwarenessDay or email email@example.com
For more information about the support we provide young carers in Hertfordshire please call us on 01992 58 69 69 or look around the website.