A Birmingham charity leader has said children come to them without coats or food, as families face “additional pressure” from the cost-of-living crisis. And some kids who bring packed lunches are eating “unstuffed sandwiches,” he said.

Spurgeons, a children’s charity that supports more than 750 young carers in Birmingham, has also received calls from families asking for help with “school uniforms they can’t afford”. He told of a young caregiver, just 14 years old, who had to negotiate with gas companies to get better rates and payment plans, since English is not his parents’ first language.

“We’re definitely seeing the impact of some of the financial pressures families are under at the moment,” Jo Martin, service leader, told BirminghamLive as she highlighted the work of people she supports on Carers Day of Action. Youths.

Read more: ‘Mom died when I was 11 years old, now I help cook, clean and take care of my family’

“We know a lot of families are struggling right now, the cost of living crisis is hard on everyone, and obviously when there’s a disability or illness in that household, it adds to that, increases that pressure.”

Spurgeons offers practical and emotional support for young caregivers, with everything from first aid training and counseling to providing family days off and help with housing and the right benefits. Events where children can ‘just be children’, away from the pressures of being a young carer for your family members, are also key to the charity’s support.

“Some of the young carers come to events and can’t bring a packed lunch, we try to provide that, or they come with very basic bread and butter instead of a stuffed sandwich, that’s what parents can afford.” Jo said.


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