1. ITV Report

Campaign for change to university application forms for carers

A campaign has launched for a change to Welsh university applications forms to help give more support to carers.

The call comes for UCAS to change its forms so that universities can get information from applicants about whether they care for someone who has an illness, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction.

Carers Trust Wales is supporting the campaign and says it would have a 'seismic impact' on the understanding of caring responsibilities.

Carers Trust Wales said the 'tiny change' to application forms would make a big difference

The evidence is clear - Wales has the highest proportion of carers in the UK and they are not receiving the support they need in university.

"Adding a carer 'tickbox' is a tiny change, but one that would have a seismic impact on universities' understanding of those with caring responsibilities. Young adult carers already face so many barriers in their lives, it's time for UCAS and universities to do their part to break down one of those barriers."

– Kieron Rees, Carers Trust Wales

UCAS told ITV News it is working to add this option as part of a wider review.

We're committed to making sure that everyone applying to university feels that their circumstances are understood. We're working to add this option as part of a wider review of our Apply system.

"Currently, young adult carers can let universities know about their situation through their UCAS personal statements and by getting in touch with universities directly, so that support can be put in place if needed. Teachers can also mention caring in their reference, if appropriate."

– Ben Jordan, UCAS