Carer's trust offers support on the web

The Princess Royal Trust for Carers is launching a site on 1 September to provide support to young people caring for those with an illness or disability.

Design agency Fortune Cookie was appointed to develop the site (www.youngcarers.net), which will offer young carers access to information and advice on any issue. They will also be able to email a trained case worker and talk to other young carers through moderated discussion boards and chatrooms.

A recent survey by the Trust found that 12 per cent of seven to 19-year-olds were caring for someone who couldn't manage alone, whether through illness or disability. The Trust added that young carers can suffer at school through being bullied or falling behind with classes.

Esther O'Sullivan, web site manager, said: "We are trying to tackle these issues by helping teachers to recognise and support young carers, and the new web site is an innovative way of doing this.

"We know from our projects that young carers, in particular, find it hard to talk to people because they are frightened that people will split up their families, so they often try to cope without support. The web site is an excellent way for young carers, who may be scared to talk, to get information."

The web site is funded by a donation from The Pears Family Foundation.

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