parents

Advice for Parents and Family


If Your Child helps care for you or another Adult


If Your Child helps to care for a brother, sister or another child in the house

Here at Sandwell Young Carers we provide support and short breaks to children and young people aged 5-18 years who support a family member suffering an illness, disability, mental ill health or substance misuse.

The Short Breaks Service that Sandwell Young Carers offers is:

  • Weekly run club sessions on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings.
  • Fortnightly run play groups for 5-11 year olds; Morning and afternoon sessions.

Sandwell Young Carers also offers day trips to various locations for young carers aged 8 years and over, along with a summer scheme run each day throughout the school holidays from 2pm until 4pm. We also offer family day trips which include the cared for.

Our Support Service offers our young carers:

  • One to one support during club sessions, over the telephone support and via email.  
  • Homework Club; homework support/reading. Working in partnership with schools.
  • Accreditations and PAYP (Positive Activities for Young People); offering additional support and guidance around voluntary placements to help gain additional experience for the future.
  • Support and integration in attending other out of school activities/projects.
  • Sign Posting to other organisations for support.
  • Weekly Group Support and Circle Time sessions.
  • Consultations with our Young People around Education and Health.
  • Awareness raising on behalf of Young Carers to professional and the community to assist in them being responsive to young carers needs.

Staff and volunteers are CRB checked and trained to run the play and youth sessions and are able to offer the necessary support in order to give our young carers the respite they deservedly need when coming here to the centre and attending off-site trips.
Sandwell Young Carers were one of the first Young Carers organisations to own their own purpose adapted building offering disabled access to the building and facilities, giving us the “Sandwell Young Carers Family Centre”. This enabling us to offer a variety of activities on site including:

  • Arts and Crafts.
  • Pool, Air Hockey and Table Football.
  • DJ Equipment.
  • Table Tennis.

The Sandwell Young Carers Family Centre is also a “Satellite Centre for Learning” offering a Study Support Suite comprising of the latest IT equipment.

And for additional support we have a Quiet Talk Room where young carers can talk to a member of the support team about any issues they may want to discuss, confidentially, in a safe and sensitive environment and receive any support necessary.  

If your child helps care for you or another adult.

Some children help look after a parent or adult in their family by: Helping them to get up, get washed or get dressed, or helping with toileting. Doing lots of household chores like shopping, cleaning, cooking, staying in the house a lot to be there for them or to keep them safe, looking after brothers and sisters and/or providing emotional support or a shoulder to cry on.

Of the 243 young carers that Sandwell Young Carers currently support, 150 of those young carers support a parent and/or both parents who have a disability.

If you have a disability or illness, have mental ill health, or if you are affected by substance misuse, you may need someone to help look after you or support you to look after your own children. You can contact your GP and/or ask Social Services for an assessment for your child/children when the person they care for are being assessed. An assessment is not a test of whether you are a good parent or not, it is a way of finding out what you and your family need to stay well and what services you need for yourself and to support you in looking after your children.  You have the right to an assessment of your needs and those of your family.

Below are some local organisations that may be of help to you and/or your family members. Included is a brief outline of their services, their contact details and a link directing you to their website if they have one:

  • Sandwell Council Assist – Contact ASSIST if; you find it hard to manage day-to-day activities at home or to get out and about, need advice, information, support, equipment or practical help – this could be because of disability, sight or hearing loss, mental or physical ill-health, or frailty due to older age. If; you are looking after an older relative or an adult with a disability or mental health problem, and need some support so you can continue doing so. If; you are a friend, relative or neighbour who is concerned about someone who needs help at home, or is at risk of harm. For more information visit http://www.sandwell.gov.uk/info/200216/adults_and_older_people/988/contact_adult_social_care or telephone 0845 652 2266 or text phone 0121 569 2083 (for people who are deaf or hard of hearing).
  • Carers Mental Health Team – Support Carers who give regular, substantial care to someone who; lives in Sandwell, has mental health difficulties, is aged 18-65 years. First a carer’s assessment of need is carried out. Support is offered to the carer by giving information, advice and guidance on a range of things. This is done informally in One to One support visits and educational group sessions. Respite breaks can be arranged for carers along with social events to meet other carers. Self-referrals are accepted. For more information visit http://www.bcpft.nhs.uk/services/for-carers/100-carers-team or telephone 0121 612 6000
  • Sandwell Deaf Community Association (SDCA) - Services: Sandwell Deaf Action Group, Hard of Hearing Group, Positive Health Group, Deaf Women’s Group, Deaf Blind Group. Contact: Deaf Resource Centre, Dagger Lane, West Bromwich, B71 4BB. Telephone: 0121 525 5347. Mincom: 0121 525 3092. Opening Hours Mon-Thurs 9am-5.30pm and Fri 9am-5.30pm. http://www.sdca.co.uk/
  • Summit House Support - At Summit House we provide a safe environment for people affected by and living with HIV/AIDS. Our services are available to anyone who lives in the Dudley or Sandwell areas.  Services are for: Anyone who is HIV+ and the friends, partners, lovers, carers and families of HIV+ people. Accessing Services: You can be referred from the GU/Sexual Health Clinic or other agency, or you can contact us by phone or e-mail to make an appointment to see a worker. Weekly drop-in sessions once you are a registered service user.  Contact: Holloway House, Martin Hill street, Dudley, DY2 8RT. Telephone: 01384 237 369. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Website: http://www.summithousesupport.co.uk/
  • Swanswell – A national alcohol and drug charity (available in Sandwell) that helps people change and be happy. One-to-one appointments offered, your choice if you wish to join any group activities. Offer tailored services to meet your needs. Contact: Drug & Alcohol Services,Swanswell, Metro Court, 150 High Street, West Bromwich, B70 6JJ. Telephone: 0845 112 0100 E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Link to Frequent Asked Questions Page: http://www.swanswell.org/faq
  • Welfare Rights – What we do: Help claim millions of pounds of under-claimed benefits. “Our guarantee is that we will NEVER make people financially worse off”. Complete all the relevant forms on behalf of clients. Represent clients where claims have failed. Operate an Advice Line: 0121 569 3158 9.30am-4.00pm Monday-Friday.  Who For?: Older people, Families with Children, People with health problems, Carers, People with mental health problems, people with learning disabilities, those in low paid work. How?: Come and see us or we will visit you. Visit the council site for more information – http://www.laws.sandwell.gov.uk/ccm/navigation/health-and-social-care/financial-help/welfare-rights Contact: Welfare Rights & Anti Poverty Unit, Central Unit, Lombard Street West, West Bromwich, B70 8EB. Telephone: Advice Line: 0121 569 3158 E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
  • Disabled Parent Network (DPN) – a national organisation which aims to increase society’s acceptance of disability in parenthood and provide support, information and advice to disabled parents and their families. DPN currently offer the following services; support – confidential via phone or e-mail, for parents and parents to be with a disability or long term health condition, their family, friends, supporters and professionals working with them. Advocacy Service, Peer Support Register, On-Line Forum, Local Network Links, Information. For more information or to join visit http://disabledparentsnetwork.org.uk/about-us/ or telephone 0300 3300 639 (Helpline & General Enquiries).
  • CARES The Carers Advice & Resource Establishment – Service for un paid family carers. Offers a free and confidential information and advice service for carers and the people they care for within Sandwell. Cares helpline holds information on and provides assistance with: aids, appliances & adaptions, leisure activities and holidays, day centres and lunch clubs, benefits & finance. Support organisations for carers and their dependants. Voluntary organisations and their work, stator services, health and community care. They also offer a unique outreach and home visits service for carers and their dependants to help with benefit claims or to advocate and guide carers through difficult situations. Contact: The Carers Centre, Edward Cheshire House, 2 Bearwood Road, Smethwick, B66 4HH. Telephone 0121 558 7003 10am-4pm (24hr answer machine). E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.   

If your child helps to care for a brother, sister or another child in the house.

Lots of young people help their parents to look after younger brothers or sisters by helping out at mealtimes or bath times or by playing with them.

A Young Carer’s personal and physical development, physical and emotional health, as well as social opportunities can all be affected by the family situation and their caring role. Young carers learn practical and caring skills at an early age and can be wrongly seen as “copers”. However, it is important to remember that they are ordinary young people with the same emotional needs as others their age.

Young Carers can experience conflicting emotions, such as loving the person they care for, while resenting the burden of care, or being proud of what they do as carers, while resisting the restriction made on their young lives. This can lead to the young person feeling guilty or confused and perhaps further isolated from their peer group. Research shows that 81% of young carers care for a parent, often a single parent, and 58% of care recipients are mothers because single parents are more likely to be mothers than fathers. A quarter look after a disabled sibling, often when parents reach breaking point. It is important to remember that young carers helping to look after a sibling are often overlooked. It is also very important to remember that not every child whose parent or sibling is ill or disabled is necessarily a young carer.

Below are some local organisations that may be of help to you and/or your family members. Included is a brief outline of their services, their contact details and a link directing you to their website if they have one:

  • SPDC (Sandwell Parents For Disabled Children) – Voluntary Organisation founded in 2003 by a group of parents and carers of disabled children. SPDC’s core function is to provide play, leisure & social opportunities for disabled children with the inclusion of siblings and parents/carers and to work with other service providers to ensure that disabled children are included.  Provide weekly adaptive sports sessions during term time and activities and trips during school holidays which the whole family can get involved in. Contact: Training & Development Centre, Parsonage Street (off popes lane), Olbury, B69 4PJ. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  Website: http://www.sp-dc.org/
  • Sandwell Deaf Community Association (SDCA) - Services: Youth Service, Play scheme, Sandwell Deaf Action Group, Hard of Hearing Group, Positive Health Group, Deaf Blind Group. Contact: Deaf Resource Centre, Dagger Lane, West Bromwich, B71 4BB. Telephone: 0121 525 5347. Mincom: 0121 525 3092. Opening Hours Mon-Thurs 9am-5.30pm and Fri 9am-5.30pm. http://www.sdca.co.uk/
  • Sandwell Multicare – Provide home based respite care for families who care at home for people with severe learning disabilities. Operate 2 Saturday clubs 11am-4pm. Contact: 15 Brook House, Brook Street Business Centre, Brook Street, Tipton, DY4 9DD. Telephone:  0121 520 4548 E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Services: Arts, culture, sport, recreation, Health. Specific Need/Circumstance: People who have learning difficulties. People who are carers. Web Link: http://sandwellvcs.info/browse/details/sandwell-multicare/item/26.html
  • Independent Living Centre – The independent Living Centre offers a range of services to improve the quality of life for disabled people in Sandwell. Some of the services they offer are: Occupational Therapy Service. Support Service for Young Disabled People. Open Days. Volunteering Opportunities. Employment Preparation. Services for Deaf and Hearing Impaired People. Services for Visually Impaired people. Wheelchair Service. Consultation with Disabled People. For more information visit: http://www.webwell.org.uk/Mobility/Independant-LivingCentre.htm or telephone 0121 558 5555, telephone minicom 0121 565 5555
  • DECCA (Drug, Education, Counselling and confidential Advice -  Sandwell MBC’s young people’s alcohol and drug service. The team work with any young person that lives in the Sandwell area aged 18 or under and the agencies that work with them. If you want to refer yourself or someone you know or work with there are 2 ways to do this: Telephone: 0845 838 5317 or complete online form/print form and return by post/e-mail/fax. Contact: Telephone: 0845 838 5317, Text: 07781 472 746, e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Website:  http://www.trustdecca.com/index.php 
  • Head To Head - a professional, independent and confidential counselling service, which is young person centred. It is available to children and young people from all backgrounds aged 5 up to 18 years old. They can self-refer or be referred by parents, schools, GPs, social services or other organisations who are concerned about the young person's emotional well-being. It is for children and young people who live within, are registered with a GP or attend a school within the Borough of Sandwell. Contact: Murray Hall Children And Family Services, SGS House, 3rd Floor, John Lane, Tividale, Oldbury, B69 3HX. Telephone: 0121 270 5145/0121 270 5146 E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Office Opening Times: Mon-Fri 9.30am-4.30pm.Counsellors available Mon-Fri 9.30am-7.30pm, Sat 10am-2pm (Out of hours there is an answer machine and messages will be answered the next working day).
  • Sandwell Advocacy  - Advocacy is when one person helps another to have their views, opinions and concerns heard by others. Advocacy is for people who find it difficult to get their opinions about themselves and their issues listened to. Advocacy is about giving you real control over your life to help you make your own choices and informed decisions.  Young Carers Advocacy Project – Providing independent support for young carers and their families in Sandwell. Supports children and young people 5-18 years of age who provide regular or on going care and emotional support for another person. Contact/Referrals:   Telephone: 0121 520 8070. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  28 Wood Street, Tipton, DY4 9BQ. Website: www.sandwelladvocacy.org

Sandwell Council “Information Point” – A directory of care and community organisations in Sandwell  http://www.sandwell.gov.uk/informationpoint

Below are some national organisations  that may be of help to you and/or your family members.

Make sure you look at "Who Can Help Me?"

Go online at: www.youngcarers.net.