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Service needs and delivery following the onset of caring amongst children and young adults: evidenced based review

posted on 2023-06-09, 14:17 authored by Saul Becker, Fiona Becker
This review provides an overview, synthesis and analysis of research and other evidence on ‘young carers’ and ‘young adult carers’ in the UK. There are 175,000 children under the age of 18 who are informal (unpaid) family carers – 2.1% of all children. Additionally, there are another 230,000 carers aged 18-24 – 5.3% of all people in this age group. This is the first evidence review that focuses on both young carers and young adult carers and their service and support needs following the onset of caring, with specific discussion of young carers and young adult carers in rural areas. The review examines the available evidence on the number and characteristics of young carers and young adult carers; the factors that explain why they become carers in the first place and why they often have to stay in these caring roles for many years; the nature of the tasks and responsibilities that they perform within the family; the range of negative and positive outcomes that are associated with caring (and how issues of resilience may affect these outcomes); the needs of young carers/young adult carers and how they can be best supported by health, social care, education and other service providers (including details of relevant legislation and policy). Finally, the review focuses on the specific issues confronting rural young carers/young adult carers and rural service providers. An extensive bibliography lists all the evidence cited in the review. Rural young carers and young adult carers face particular barriers in accessing and receiving services and support, compounded by distance, lack of adequate public transport, isolation, stigma and lack of privacy. There is a need for authorities and organisations to plan services and support for these carers which recognise (a) the impact of rurality and (b) that it will cost more to develop and provide equality of services in rural areas – the ‘rural premium’.


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  • Published


Commission for Rural Communities



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  • Social Work and Social Care Publications


University of Nottingham

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