Young carers in Norfolk set to lose support service

Support groups for young carers are set to be replaced by new services Picture: Getty Images

Support groups for young carers are set to be replaced by new services Picture: Getty Images - Credit: Getty Images

New support services will be on offer to young carers across Norfolk.

Boom! Young Carers Positive Activities Service runs support groups in Norwich, west Norfolk, north Norfolk, east Norfolk, south Norfolk and Breckland for young people aged 6 to 18 whose lives are affected by caring for somebody.

Now the Benjamin Foundation, which runs the service for Norfolk County Council, says it will come to an end on March 31.

'This is because Norfolk County Council agreed to fund this service for a maximum of five years from April 1, 2014, it says in an e-mail to parents seen by the EDP. 'The Benjamin Foundation is grateful for their support over the last five years.

'NCC is commissioning a new service for young carers and their families from April 2019 to March 2024 and we will write to you again in January 2019 to give you more information.

'In the meantime we would like to encourage you to continue to make the most of the Boom! Young Carers Positive Activities service until the end of March 2019.'

Norfolk County Council said it was working with carers and their families to develop new services.

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'These services will replace the current Boom! service and we will ensure those children currently using Boom! continue to receive the support they need,' a spokesman said.

'Our new services will help more young carers receive support, as well as focus on the needs of the person that they are caring for. The service will also seek to raise awareness of young carers with other services, such as schools, colleges and health professionals.

'There will be opportunities for young carers aged five to 19 years to receive a three to six month individual and group work service to ensure that they develop the knowledge, skills, confidence and resilience they need. This means young carers will have the opportunity to take a break from caring if needed and to socialise with other young carers if they want to.'

The Benjamin Foundation's website says caring responsibilities can impact heavily on young people's lives.

They may not have a playful childhood because they have chores to do at home such as tidying, shopping, or accompanying a family member to hospital appointments.

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