Young carers enjoy day out at visitor centre
A group of young carers and their workers from across Shropshire have enjoyed a free day out at a tourist attraction near Oswestry.
The young carers were treated to a day of activities and fun at the Tanat Valley Light Railway Nant Mawr Visitor Centre, including the opportunity to take a ride on the trains and explore the fantastic facilities at the centre.
The event was arranged by Mark Hignett from the Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly in response to recommendations made by Shropshire Council’s safe and confident communities scrutiny committee back in May. One of the recommendations was to see if the voluntary sector could provide further support for young carers.
Mark, who attended the meeting, was looking into the gaps identified by a young carer who presented her moving story at the scrutiny meeting, to see what other support the assembly could offer.
As a result, Mark organised the trip to the visitor centre where the young carers could relax and take a well-earned break.
Councillor Joyce Barrow, chair of the safe and confident communities scrutiny committee, said:
“I am really pleased that following our scrutiny meeting on young carers and listening to their experiences, our recommendations are being actioned and are now moving forward in addressing the gaps highlighted by young carers.
“Caring responsibilities can be demanding at any time of life but for young people, having to look after someone long-term can be especially difficult. We are delighted that the Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly has taken up our recommendations to support local young carers to take a break from their day-to-day responsibilities and focus instead on their own wellbeing for a while.
“I would like to thank Mark for organising this event, which is a great opportunity for our young carers to enjoy a relaxing day out, meet and socialise with other young carers.”
Mark Hignett, of the Voluntary and Community Sector Assembly, said:
“Young carers have so much to cope with. Not only are they growing up, they have to care for a parent and often young siblings too. Being responsible for the whole family at such a young age can be draining and can put a lot of pressure on the young carer. That’s why we wanted to give then a trip out to Nant Mawrr to experience the great facilities on offer at the centre and to let their hair down.”
Mark is now planning to organise more trips for young carers in the future.