Local, Independant and Effective

Get behind National Carers Week - become a mentor for young carers

Posted October 12, 2015


CATHY McGOWAN (Indi) (16:22): This week is Carers Week, and today I would like to acknowledge Australia's 2.7 million unpaid carers. I would particularly like to draw attention to young carers and the many young people right across Australia caring for family members who are unwell or have a disability.

Young carers need support and they need respite, particularly in rural areas where they are often isolated. This is where the Hume Region Villa Maria Catholic Homes Young Carer Mentor Program excels. Villa Maria supports 90 young carers across the Hume region aged between eight and 19 years. So far, 26 young carers have been matched with mentors and more than 30 more young carers are on the waiting list to be matched.

So thank you, Angelina, a young person who is caring for her four-year-old brother, and thank you, Glenys, Angelina's mentor. Together they share time away from the caring role. Thank you to all the staff at Villa Maria, who make this wonderful program happen. Today I call on my colleagues across parliament and particularly the people of Indi to put your hand up to do this simple and very effective mentoring of a young carer. Give them time out and give them support. Mentoring is simple. It has an impact and the long-term benefits are there forever. So please spread the word in Indi. Please put your hand up to be a mentor to our young carers.

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