Young Carers

It is estimated that there are 96,500 young carers living in NSW. The Carers NSW Young Carer Program was developed to make a positive difference in the lives of young carers and their families.

Young carers are children or young people, 25 years or under, who help care for someone in their family who has a disability, mental illness, drug and/or alcohol dependency, chronic condition, terminal illness or who is frail.

Young carers are a hidden carer group, often not acknowledged for their caring contribution. It is estimated that 96,500 young people, aged 25 or under, living in NSW are carers [i]

While caring can result in positive outcomes for young people, for example gaining important skills and developing close family bonds; research shows that young carers face a range of challenges and difficulties associated with their caring role.

Young carers are less likely than their non-carer counterparts to complete their education and participate in employment; young carers often have a lack of time to participate in social and recreational activities, and many experience both physical and mental health problems as a result of caring [ii].  

The Carers NSW Young Carer Program was developed to make a positive difference in the lives of young carers and their families through a range of initiatives aimed at reducing these challenges and increasing opportunities for positive outcomes.  

The Young Carer Program supports and connects young carers through: 

  • an interactive Young Carer website 
  • access to exclusive online forums
  • Carers NSW Young Carer Leadership Program 
  • counselling
  • emotional support
  • information and referrals
  • newsletters
  • young carer awareness workshops 
  • young carer opportunities and events

For more information, or to join the young carer community, visit the young carer website or Facebook page or call the Carer Line on 1800 242 636 (freecall from landlines, mobile rates apply).

The Young Carer Program is funded by Family and Community Services, Ageing, Disability and Home Care and the Australian Government Department of Social Services. 

[i] ABS (2015) Disability, Ageing and Carers, Summary of Findings, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australian Government, Canberra

[i] [ii} Cass, B, Brennan, D, Thomson, C, Hill, T, Purcal, C, Hamilton, M, and Adamson, E (2011) Young carers: Social policy impacts of the caring responsibilities of children and young adults, Report prepared for ARC Linkage Partners, October 2011. 

Young Carers Count Competition

The Young Carers Count competition, launched during National Carers Week, is an exciting opportunity for young carers to get creative and share their story.

To enter, young carers aged 25 and under can share their story;

  • As a video or audio piece to camera (3 minutes in length)
  • Through photography (3 images maximum)
  • As a written piece (500 words maximum)

The winner will receive a camera equipment gift pack, valued at over $1,500 and three runners-up will each receive a smartphone accessories pack. 

To find out more, visit the young carer website. Entries close on Friday 24 November 2017.

- Watch This Space homepage banner

Watch This Space

Watch This Space, a young carer awareness raising workshop, was launched in 2017 to help professionals identify and support young carers in a school setting. The youth-driven project delivers workshops in partnership with young carers, which gives professionals the opportunity to hear caring stories first hand.

Here is what schools are saying about these workshops:

“One of the best presentations from a government service or NGO I have ever seen/experienced.”

“It was an outstanding presentation that should be done in all schools!”

“Very eye-opening to hear a first-hand story from a young carer at school. Definitely raised my awareness, thank you!”

If you would like to nominate a school for Watch This Space, contact the Young Carer team on 1800 242 636 or email at



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Carers NSW acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land, Elders past and present and all Aboriginal people.