What we do
Services & Activities
Young Carer Groups
Organised activities, discussions, support and a chance to meet other young carers and have fun.
This is the main service provided at the project and offers young carers a chance to make new friends and have a break from their caring situation at home. As well as providing a safe space to talk about young carers’ issues, it is also recognised that young carers need ‘time-out’ to just be a young person. Group activities are driven by the young people and can be anything from a trip to the cinema or trampolining to a theatre show or a 3D printing class.
Young Carer Individual Support
One to one time with a worker.
Every young person that joins the service has a dedicated development worker that they can spend time with however they like, whether this be at our offices, in a games room or over a sandwich and a milkshake at their favourite café. Priority is given to young people whose needs may not be fully met within group work or who are experiencing difficulty in being part of a group.
Residentials & Day Trips
Time-out from home. A chance to try new things and have fun.
From time to time we are able to offer young carers the chance to get away for a week or a weekend if their home situation allows. We also organise one-off day trips and open days for young carers. These trips are an excellent way for the young people to really relax, bond and challenge themselves with activities and have a proper break from caring.
Information & Support
To enable young carers and their families to access other services.
We recognise that young carers’ circumstances vary enormously. We aim to support young carers and their family members, including the person being cared for, to find local services that will meet their specific needs.
Young Carers’ Forum
Speaking up for young carers’ rights
Held monthly at Edinburgh City Chambers, this is an opportunity for young carers aged 12 years and over who wish to speak up for the rights of young carers and help inform change on what matters to them. The Forum is often joined by representatives from other support organisations, the Scottish Government and other interested parties to help build a strong voice for young carers across Edinburgh.
We work within schools to help identify young carers and raise awareness, helping teachers and pupils to understand what it means to be a young person with caring responsibilities at home and how they can be supported.
Our Schools project has proven to be an effective way of reaching out to those young people who might need additional support, understanding, time out and to help them reach their learning potential whilst having a caring role at home. Schools Awareness Raising project
General Awareness Raising
Campaigning on behalf of young carers locally and nationally.
Through networking and partnership with other organisations, EYC staff work to highlight young carers’ issues and inform other professionals in order to help identify ‘hidden’ young carers and raise awareness of their rights and responsibilities.
Drug & Alcohol Service
Our specialist team provides a confidential service to young people who care for, or are affected by a parent or family member with problematic drug and/or alcohol use. These young people have access to all of our services – one to one support, taking part in fun activities and trips away and also more specialised support.
Many young people affected by drug and alcohol use can face obstacles to learning, eating well, self care and forming healthy friendships. Families may also experience more difficulty with finances and keeping safe. To help support these young people, we run regular sessions focusing on core skills such as reading, learning to swim and ride a bike, co-ordination skills and cookery classes.
We can also help to find families the right social and financial support and provide clothing grants for young people through our funders.
Safe and confidential
Since 2017, EYC has been providing a counselling service to young people who may benefit from additional support through talking therapy. There are some things that a young person may not want to talk to anybody else about. Our counsellor offers a safe, confidential and impartial space to help manage feelings of stress, fear, anger, grief, confusion and anxiety and helps young people to develop coping tools, reduce anxiety and feel happier.
Counselling often proves to be instrumental in helping people develop healthy lifelong skills to manage their emotions, particularly at times of stress.
Confidentiality Policy for Young People
When you talk with a worker at Edinburgh Young Carers, you have the right to expect that what you say will NOT be discussed with anyone who does not work at the project without your permission.
If you talk to a worker about something that they feel is dangerous for you, or another person and they are concerned about you or the other persons safety, they may need to tell someone else. They will talk with you about this first.
A worker may ask you if it is OK to speak with someone else (e.g. doctor or social worker). If you do not want the worker to tell anyone else, but the worker thinks that you need to be protected and kept safe by doing so, then they may have to go against your wishes, but you will be told if this is going to happen.
Edinburgh Young Carers will do whatever they can to make sure you are safe.