Almost 200 ID cards have been issued so far to children and young people with a caring role across the County. The card gives them a quick way to inform professionals such as teachers, pharmacists and GPs, that they have a caring responsibility.
“The Young Carer ID card offers a discreet but effective way for young carers to identify themselves without having to publically share details about their caring role,” said Gemma Baker from Pembrokeshire County Council’s social care team.
A young carer is someone that cares for a friend or family member who, due to illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction, cannot cope without their support.
It is estimated that in Wales there are more than 30,000 young carers, which equates to one in every twelve young people across the country.
Funded by Welsh Government, the Young Carers ID card is part of a national scheme to ensure that carers get the recognition and support that they need. The scheme was launched in Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire at the same time as it was rolled out in Pembrokeshire to make it easier for young carers who access services in more than one county.
Jonathan Griffiths, Director of Social Services, praised the scheme and said he was pleased it had been so successful.
“This is a really valuable initiative which will help young carers, and I’m pleased it’s been so popular already,” he said.
Young carers in Pembrokeshire already registered with Action for Children have automatically been given a Young Carer ID card; and since the launch nearly 70 new young carers previously unknown to local carer support services have also come forward.
Vikki Phillips from Action for Children said they were proud to be implementing an ID card that will help young carers in a variety of practical ways.
“This card will not only make the young carers lives a little easier by not having to explain their caring responsibilities, but it will also raise awareness of Young Carers within Pembrokeshire and is helping to identify hidden Young Carers,” she said.
The Young Carer ID card also holds additional benefits, including fantastic offers from local venues such as Scolton Manor who are currently offering a free annual car parking pass to Young Carer ID card holders, as well as a free hot drink from their café. Young Carers who hold a valid ID card can also access a six month free membership at their local leisure centre via the Passport to Leisure scheme.
“The card has already proved popular with the Young Carers that we support, with many keeping it with them every day and using it to access local benefits on offer,” said Vikki.
· If you think you might be a young carer, or possibly work with a young person who has a caring role, please contact Action for Children for more information on how to claim a card and the many benefits they hold.
· Alternatively you can visit the Action for Children website, where they have information on the card, how it is used by young carers in Pembrokeshire, and a direct application form.
· For more information on local support available for young carers, or to register for a Young Carer I.D. card, please contact Vikki at Action for Children.
· Contact details for Action for Children:
Tel: 01437 761330 / Email: [email protected]