Lottery grant gives respite to young carers

A lottery grant of nearly half a million pounds has been awarded to a project helping young carers in Gateshead. Crossroads Caring for Carers will now be able to help youngsters from 5 to 25 years old.

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  1. Julia Barthram

Carers get Big Lottery boost

Carers as young as five-years-old are to be offered help thanks to a grant from the Big Lottery Fund.

The grant of almost £500,000 has been awarded to Crossroads Care in Gateshead. The centre helps around 700 young carers from the age of 8 to 18, now it will be able to help them from the age of 5 to 25.

Carers from as young as five will be offered help

Young carers learn skills like cooking, budgeting and first aid. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

Gateshead Crossroads Caring for Carers has been awarded almost £500,000 by the Big Lottery Fund to help young carers in the Borough. At the moment the service, in Rowlands Gill, helps carers from eight to 18 years old, now they'll be able to extend that to five to 25 year olds.

Young carers don't achieve as well as their peers at school, so the service concentrates on helping their school attainment and training. It hosts weekly sessions to improve health and fitness and learn new skills.

Most importantly it gives youngsters a break from caring and allows them to play and regain their childhood.

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Grant to help children reach their full potential

It is a sad fact of life that there are vulnerable children at the tender age of five having to share responsibility of caring for members of their family.

By taking on this burden child carers can fail to enjoy a normal childhood and fall behind in school which impacts on their future job prospects.

This grant of almost half a million pounds will help prevent Gateshead children taking on inappropriate caring responsibilities and help them reach their full potential.

– Alison Rowe, Big Lottery Fund

Lottery windfall for 4 North East projects

Youngsters get a break from caring at Crossroads Care in Gateshead Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

A Big Lottery Fund grant of more than £1.5 million has been awarded to four schemes in the North East. The money from the Reaching Communities programme will help schemes in Gateshead, Shildon in County Durham, South Tyneside and Benwell in Newcastle.

Gateshead Crossroads Caring for Carers will now be able to extend its services to help young carers from 5 to 25 years old. It hosts weekly activity sessions to improve carers' health and fitness and workshops on topics such as first aid and budgeting.

The Shildon Alive project at Saint John's Church in Shildon, County Durham, aims to improve the health, confidence and skills of people with poor physical and mental health through gardening and work experience.

Women's Health on South Tyneside and The Millin Centre in Benwell have also received grants.

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