What do I need to know?
If you are under 18 and help to look after someone who has a disability, a mental health condition, an illness, drug and alcohol problems, or if you act as an interpreter for them, then you may be a young carer.
You don’t have to be living in the same house as the person you care for.
As a young carer you might have to take on an adult role at home. Perhaps you have to do extra jobs like cooking, cleaning or helping someone get dressed as well as going to school. This can be really tough.
You might find it lonely and difficult to talk about your responsibilities as a young carer. There are organisations that you can speak to in confidence. Use our Support Near You tool below to find help and support near you.
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Being a carer is a big responsibility. If you are under 18 and a young carer, you can ask social services at your local council to carry out an assessment of your needs. They can look at what support you need and what additional help the person you are caring for may need. You can find your local council here.
If you don’t want to go to social services yourself, try speaking to an adult that you trust and ask them to help you get in touch with social services.
You can also find out more about being a young carer here.
If you are over 16 and in part-time education, or working part-time then you may be entitled to some financial support through carers allowance. There are certain conditions that you have to meet, which you can read about here.
If you are not able to claim money, then you should still get help with checking that the person you are caring for is claiming money that they are entitled to. Contact Shelter Cymru for advice.
If you are living and caring for someone who is a member of your family and they have a tenancy agreement, it’s important to think about what this means for your housing rights.
If you are under 18 you cannot legally hold a tenancy agreement. However, an adult can hold a tenancy on trust for you until you turn 18. This means that you can ask the landlord to put you on the tenancy agreement alongside the adult tenancy holder.
Before you ask to be added on to the tenancy agreement, you should think about what this may mean in the long term, for example, will you want to move out when you turn 18? Get advice before making any decisions.
Sometimes things don’t work out with family, even if you are caring for them and you have to leave. Or sadly, the person you were caring for dies and you have no right to remain in the house. If you have to leave home in a hurry, don’t panic, there is help available. If you find yourself homeless your first port of call should be the housing department for your local council. You can find out more about going to the council here.