How old are you?
15 years old.
How long have you been caring for your mum?
I’ve been caring since I was seven, so eight years now.
You were telling me about some of the chores you have to do at your own house and it’s a much bigger list than I had when I was 15. What kind of things does that involve?
Like weekly it’s mainly just cleaning the surfaces and sweeping the floor, sometimes doing laundry and sometimes also folding clothes. Cleaning cabinets, cleaning the microwave.
What kind of things do you have to do like you personally day to day to help your mum?
Ask her how she’s feeling and if she’s not feeling well then I’d help her take her bags up and bring her food to her room instead of her coming down here.
Do you feel like as a young carer aside from like education, do you feel like you miss out on anything?
I’d be less likely to be allowed to go out probably every week or every other week than other kids. So say if I wanted to go out shopping or something, I wouldn’t be able to do that.
What’s the hardest part of being a young carer?
Having patience when the person you’re caring for is not happy or something, sometimes. Or like when I was younger I never knew that my mom was rushed to hospital, so the days that she told me ever since then I’ve just been scared. Like say if I got a call from school saying, “Oh your mom’s passed away,” or something, then I’ll just be scared during school or I’ll just want to be with her.
Do you think if you had like some kind of support network at school or school knew more about it, were more involved, that things would be easier for you?
Yeah, I think so because then they’ll understand why I find it sometimes hard to study. And also there is a woman that you can talk to, but they expect you to go to her and I’m not really one to talk about my feelings a lot. So I think adults should come to us if they’re like a mentor in the school or someone that is easy to talk to.
Do you think there should be more support for young carers in the UK?
Yeah, because I went to the camp I think two years ago and there was someone that cared for his brother and he was blind. I think that would take a lot of perseverance and patience so I think he would need a lot of support and other people as well.
Is there anything positive about being a young carer?
Yeah, I get to spend more time with my mum and I enjoy our company a lot as well.