Carina is a young adult carer. She has been caring for her mother, who suffers from depression and anxiety, from a young age. As she was growing up, Carina’s role as a carer involved providing practical support to her mother, by organising doctors’ appointments and managing her medication, as well as providing her with emotional support and looking after her younger sister.
Carina has been an active supporter at the Carers’ Support Centre in Bristol for three years. She initially started volunteering with the Young Carers Voice forum, speaking out about issues affecting young carers and in particular, mental health issues.
As Carina approached her 18th birthday, she became concerned that she could no longer access Young Carers support and so, along with others who were in the same position as her, decided to set up the thriving Eighteen Plus Group, which provides support for young adult carers between the ages of 18 and 25. Since it was set up, the group has been a great success and has allowed Carina to reach out to those who are in the same position as her and who need support.
Carina juggles two part-time jobs working with children and young people, as well as her role as a volunteer. She continues to care for her mother and now her father too, as he has recently been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. Her energy and commitment are an inspiration to all those who meet her.
This Award also recognised another 8 winners from, regions across the UK, for their work as carers and volunteers. The winners were: Sharon Findlay, Siobhan Miller, Angela Mulhern, June Gordon, Glenys Williams, Madeleine Spice, Sheridan Butterfield, Bosco Ssendegeya.