Northumberland Freemasons have donated £27,000 to young carers in Northumberland thanks to financial support from the national Masonic Charitable Foundation (MCF). The grant is one of several donations allocated nationwide to help charities impacted by Coronavirus.
Run by Carers Northumberland, the Young Carer Support Project assists young carers across Northumberland. A young carer is an unpaid carer under the age of 18 who helps to look after someone in their family, or a friend, who is ill, disabled, has a mental health condition or misuses drugs or alcohol. The service ensures that children and young people have the support they need to learn, develop and thrive to enjoy positive childhoods and to achieve their full potential.
Debra Blakey, CEO of Carers Northumberland explained that the funding would help the charity continue to identify and support more young carers across the county.
“We currently know of 120 young carers in the county, but we also know that there are many more out there who need our help, support and guidance. The funding will help us to provide toolkits for schools and arrange a programme of events for the young people. It’s vital that with all the responsibilities they have on their shoulders that we help them to become a child again for a few hours so that they can recharge their batteries and know that they have our support to do the amazing caring they do every day.”
Alasdair Watson representing Northumberland Freemasons explained that the grant was there to help Carers Northumberland at a time when cash donations are down due to COVID and to assist them to carry on their vital work.
“Young carers have been profoundly impacted by the pandemic in many ways. For instance, lockdown and the closure of schools has taken away the very place where so many young carers feel they can get a short break from their situation at home. There is also a greater demand for mental health support to prevent young carer breakdown and address the fears and worries of those who are already under so much strain. Northumberland Freemasons are pleased to support the good work of Carers Northumberland and the remarkable young people who selflessly care for others,” he said.
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