Friday, 6 November 2015
A secondary school in Carmarthenshire has become the first in the county to be formally recognised for their work with young carers.

St John Lloyd School in Llanelli has achieved the Investors in Carers Bronze level award, presented by Hywel Dda University Health Board, which celebrates the excellent work they have undertaken with pupils who are young carers.

The scheme, launched in autumn 2014, is designed to help health facilities such as GP practices and hospitals focus on and improve their carer awareness and enhance the help and support they give carers. Now the initiative will recognise schools to highlight the role of young carers.

A wide range of information and advice is available for young carers in the school and staff have worked hard to ensure pupils understand how to get support that can make all the difference for them and the person they care for.

The school, who have received the support of Carmarthenshire Young Carers service, have also raised awareness of what a carer is for those pupils who do not have caring responsibilities.

Ashley Howells, Headteacher for St John Lloyd School said: “As a school we are delighted that our excellent record for pastoral care and pupil wellbeing has been recognised by being the first school in Carmarthenshire to be awarded the Investors in Carers Bronze Award.

“We are grateful for the ongoing support provided by Carmarthenshire Young Carers and feel this collaborative approach ensures those pupils that are most vulnerable and take on a role of caring are provided with the support they need.”

Rob Sully, Director of Education for Carmarthenshire County Council praised the school for the achievement: “Carmarthenshire County Council believes strongly in giving every child and young person the maximum opportunity to reach their full education potential, acknowledging that some young people have to overcome obstacles in their personal lives to succeed.

“We are very aware that young carers provide fantastic personal support to other people whilst going about their education and themselves require a little help along the way.

“I am delighted that St John Lloyd School is actively supporting its pupils who are also young carers and that the work of the school and its pupils has been acknowledged though the Investors in Carers Award. My congratulations and thanks go to everyone concerned.”

Peter Llewellyn, Assistant Director of Strategic Partnerships for Hywel Dda UHB added: “Having already been developed in GP surgeries and community pharmacies, it is particularly pleasing that the Investors in Carers scheme has been adapted and successfully introduced in secondary schools in an effort to identify young carers.

“As a health board we would like to acknowledge the way that these schools have enthusiastically embraced the scheme and we hope that current discussions with other schools will also see them recognised in the same way.”

Young carers are children and young people under the age of 18 who may be involved in caring for parents, siblings, or other relatives who have an illness, disability, mental health condition, suffered substance misuse or other need for care or supervision. Anyone can become a carer; in most cases becoming a carer is not out of choice, it just happens.

For more information about the support available to carers and the Investors in Carers scheme please visit: www.hywelddahb.wales.nhs.uk/carers

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