Chichester Festival Theatre has launched a major new pilot project and fundraising appeal, Young Carers Connect, to help reconnect young carers in West Sussex with support, education and the arts.
There are an estimated 6,000 young caregivers in West Sussex under the age of 18, including some children as young as four years old. Young carers take on substantial responsibilities, providing vital care and support to their loved ones when they are themselves just children and teenagers.
44% of young carers use online platforms to access help and support, and to keep connected with others. Due to Covid-19 and the closures to schools, support centres and libraries, many young carers have been unable to access the help and support they rely on, simply because they do not own, or are unable to afford a computer or internet access; the majority of young carers live in low-income households. Even as schools reopen, many will remain confined to their homes as they continue to care for vulnerable family members.
In partnership with West Sussex Young Carers, local schools and family support workers, Chichester Festival Theatre aims to address this serious issue by delivering a one-year pilot project to reconnect young carers in West Sussex with vital support services, their education, fellow young carers, the arts, and a world beyond their life as a young carer. Donations of any size will be gratefully received.
Listen to some young carers' experiences and discover what a donation could achieve for Young Carers Connect.