On the last weekend of June, 8 young people and two youth workers from The Zone Youth Club attended the national Young Carers Festival at the YMCA Fairthorne Manor in Hampshire.
For the young people, the experience “was so cool; on the first night they said really lovely things about being a young carer” and “it was really nice to think that everyone there is the same as you.” Zone Leader Jane said, “We took part in participatory consultations, which made us all think about whether our young carers are supported enough by professionals and if we could do more to help them within our club but also within schools. The group also took part in a research project which is studying how young carers are affected in later life, for example, with respect to their physical and mental health and wellbeing.”
The festival, run by The Children’s Society, gives young carers the opportunity to relax, socialise and have their voices heard about issues that affect them. The outcomes from the consultations inform future work and are also communicated to the government.
We would like to say thank you to everyone who supported our fundraising at the Independent Market and Bunnings, making it possible for us to take the group on this amazing opportunity.
The Zone Youth Club, run by The Pod Charity, benefits young carers aged 10-18 and aims to be a fun, relaxed place to unwind. We meet every other Wednesday from 6-8pm, many of our members have a sibling with a disability. Activities are driven by our youth members and have included film, cooking and challenge nights. Our youth work team provide a nurturing environment, whilst supervising and supporting the activity choices. If you know someone who may benefit from joining The Zone, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Jane on 07736 470328.
The Zone is reliant on grants, donations and our own fundraising activities and is seeking funding to maintain services. If you feel like you could offer support or would like to get involved, we would love to hear from you.