The Young Carers Project is a statewide program that consists of a range of support options and recreational opportunities for primary and secondary young carers.
The Young Carers Project supports young people who have extraordinary caring responsibilities for parents or siblings who suffer from mental illness, disability or chronic disease and injuries.
A large component of the young carer program is a week long camp held in the January holidays. This camp is based on a peer support and recreation model whereby young carers experiences of isolation are diminished due to the opportunities that present to make new friends, create great memories and laughter and participate in fun filled activities.
Detailed evaluation and feedback forms are filled in by young carers about the quality of camp and what more make the Young Carers Project better for them.
Leader evaluation meetings are also held at the conclusion of each camp in which the achievements and outcomes of the camp are discussed and documented for future camp consideration.
The program is always under constant evaluation by the project worker, volunteers, peer leaders and young carers in order to improve the service provided to our clients.
The Young Carers Project recognises the importance of always including the young people in the planning and evaluation process.
The Young Carers Project is based on evidence which suggests that young carers are a group who are significantly disadvantaged in life due to their caring role.
Recent research shows that that although young carers can experience positive impacts of caring these can be overshadowed at times by feelings of fatigue, stress, anxiety and isolation.
The Young Carers Project have incorporated these findings into the delivery of our project and aim to deliver a camp that allows young carers the opportunity to obtain peer group support and interaction; counselling and other forms of assistance and more respite and relaxation time.
By hanging out at a camp for a week we see really positive change happen in the lives of these young people. As they get involved in a range of activities, they have a chance to refresh themselves, talk with leaders and other carers about their feelings, look at new ways of dealing with challenges and of course have fun!!