Types of carers


You are a carer if you provide care or support to someone.

This could be a relative, partner or a friend who has care and support needs and can't manage without help in their day to day life.

You don't have to live with the person you care for.

The help you give could be emotional, physical or practical.

Caring can happen at any time and is likely to impact on your life.

You are not paid for the care you provide. If you get Carer's Allowance, this is not classed as a care payment.

The support that is available to you may be different, depending on the type of carer you are.

Adult carers

You are an adult carer if:

  • you are an adult providing care for another adult who needs care and support
  • you are a parent caring for your child who is over the age of 18 

Parent carers

You are a parent carer if:

  • you look after your own child, or have parental responsibility for a child who has a disability or additional needs, and is under the age of 18

Young carers

You are a young carer if you are a child or young person aged 25 or under, and you provide or plan to provide care, practical help or emotional support to another person.

As a young carer, you can be at risk of:

  • social isolation
  • bullying
  • under-achievement
  • missing school
  • physical and mental ill health

Type of support you might provide

A young carer carries out important caring tasks and takes on responsibilities that would usually be expected of an adult.

This might involve:

  • personal care
  • giving medication
  • helping someone get up, get dressed or get around
  • emotional support for someone who has a mental health problem or substance addiction

Who you might care for

The person you are caring for can be a parent, sibling, grandparent or other family member who:

  • is disabled
  • has a chronic illness
  • has a mental health problem
  • has a substance misuse problem
  • has a condition that they need care, support or supervision for

You might also be responsible for looking after younger brothers and sisters and all or most of the household chores.

Your rights

You and your family have the right to be identified, offered information, get an assessment and support.

The Council has a responsibility to:

  • carry out a carer's assessment for young carers before their 18th birthday
  • identify, assess and support carers by working with other local organisations to make sure they are proactively identifying all young carers
  • make sure the assessment process meets the criteria set out in legislation
  • make sure we join up the work of Children's and Adult Services so that young carers and young adults can benefit from the services working together
  • make sure that services working with young carers are aware that young carers now have stronger rights, so they can make sure they benefit from these important changes

For information and advice or to arrange an assessment, please contact Children's Social Care on 0191 424 5010

For young carers support services contact Humankind Charity.

Find out more about the help and support available to young carers at NHS: Being a young carer - your rights.

For more information about the assessment system and support for young carers, see Carers UK: Young carers and carers of children under 18.

School drop in sessions

If you are a young carer in South Tyneside, the drop-in sessions are a great chance to meet other young carers in your school and chat to the school support staff.

At every drop-in session there is a game or an activity, as well as snacks to enjoy while chatting to other young carers.

Where you can go for advice

Young adult carers

You are a young adult carer if:

  • you are aged 16 to 25 and provide unpaid care or support to someone who has care and support needs