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Facts about caring

At least 2.65 million Australians, including 854,300 people living in NSW, provide ongoing care and support to a family member or friend. That means that more than 1 in 10 Australians, and more than 1 in 8 NSW residents, is a carer.1

What we know about carers

Every caring role is unique, and anyone can become a carer at any time.

We can find out a lot about the common characteristics and experiences of carers from the Australian Bureau of Statistics Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers.

  • 1 in 3 carers are ‘primary carers’, the main person providing care to an individual
  • 1 in 3 primary carers care for their partner, while just over 1 in 4 care for their child (including adult children), and just over 1 in 4 care for a parent
  • women aged between 55 and 64 years are most likely population group to have a caring role
  • women are more likely to be carers than men in general, especially primary carers
  • carers are more likely to live with disability than other Australians
  • at least 1 in 10 carers live in rural areas
  • at least 1 in 10 carers are aged 25 years or younger
  • 1 in 3 carers receive a Centrelink payment as their main source of income
  • 43% of carers are not in paid employment or looking for work2

Carer diversity

Carers come from all walks of life and cultural backgrounds, and provide care for a variety of reasons in a variety of situations. Caring can be even more common in specific community groups, such as among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and culturally and linguistically diverse (CALD) Australians.

These carers, as well as carers from lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex and other sexuality, sex and gender diverse (LGBTQI+) communities, carers living in regional and rural areas, and young carers (aged 25 years and under), can experience additional challenges and need tailored support.

For more information about carer diversity, view our policy and research resources.