Last week I held another carers surgery at the Vassall Centre, in Fishponds. This is a surgery specifically for those who care for others, unpaid – usually elderly or disabled family members – to give them an opportunity to ask for help or advice if they need it, or to tell me what more they think the Government, Council, NHS and others could be doing to support them. Many carers make a huge contribution, often at great personal cost – not just financially, as caring can often take a toll on the carer’s mental and physical health too.
Although there’s been some progress in recognising the pressures on young carers, we could still do more to make sure they’re supported at school, as they attempt to balance looking after a parent or sibling with the demands of school work. Hewa, a 13 year old pupil at St Mary Redcliffe, came along to my surgery to tell me about his life as a young carer.