Jake has been caring for his mum since he was seven. Now, with YMCA’s support, he is helping other young carers too. Help us support others like Jake.

1 in 12 young people in the UK are acting as carers

£6 billion in cuts from adult social care budgets since 2010

10,000 rise in the numbers of young carers seeking support in just four years

How your gift could help transform young people’s lives

  • £11 could pay for a session at a Young Carer’s group, to give a young carer a break

  • A gift of £50 could help cover the cost of two hours of a support workers time

  • £115 could pay for a day of support for a young carer, giving them a safe space to be a young person and access to new opportunities

YMCA works with thousands of children and young people like Jake, across England and Wales, some are as young as 7 years old.

Jake's story

Jake’s mum had a stroke when he was 7 years old and he’s been looking after her and his younger siblings ever since. He found it very hard to cope but luckily that all changed when he joined a YMCA Young Carers group.

YMCA inspired him to create a cooking app called ‘Starter Chef’ for young carers. YMCA helped him plan, learn to code and design his new app – even while still caring for his family. It’s been a great success, helping lots of other young carers, and Jake is now living a more independent life.

“I hope that my app will make life a little easier for people, especially young carers. Life can be difficult, but I’ve learnt that you can always push yourself to achieve more.”

Eve's story

Eve is 15 years old and cares for her dad who is living with schizophrenia and bi-polar disorder. She found it so exhausting and became depressed herself. This caused her school work to suffer and Eve began self-harming.

She was referred to a YMCA young carer’s group where she felt safe and supported by the YMCA professionals and as a result, grew in confidence. So much so that she is now a brilliant Chair of the whole young carer’s group.

YMCA gave Eve the energy she needs to help other young carers.

Fontanna's story

When Fontanna was 17, her relationship with her mother broke down and she had to move out with nowhere to go. Fontanna found herself struggling to cope and admitted herself to a local psychiatric hospital.

After leaving hospital, she found YMCA who took her in and gave her the support that she desperately needed and she hasn’t looked back since. She now writes books to ensure other young people don’t lose hope.

Thanks to the help from YMCA, helping young people is her new driving purpose in life.