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MYTIME Young Carers

Young carers work incredibly hard to take care of the people they love, and they deserve medals. Instead, they often face disadvantage as a result of their caring roles. At MYTIME, we work to level the playing field for young carers and young adult carers of ages 5-25, by providing them with the support, opportunities and friendship that every child deserves.

www.mytimeyoungcarers.org Fundraise for us

07958 027427

Registered charity no. 297481

Member since October 2020

Latest News

Operation Christmas: Local charity to host Christmas party for all Dorset young carers

Operation Christmas: Local charity to host Christmas party for all Dorset young carers

Local charity, MYTIME Young Carers, is on a mission to host a Christmas party for the over 600 young carers living in Dorset. As well as organising the virtual event, the MYTIME team are going one step further, delivering goody bags, including Christmas jumpers and presents, to every child invited. To pull off the social event of the season and spread the Christmas cheer these young people truly deserve, MYTIME is looking for donations and volunteers.

A young carer is a child or young person responsible for looking after a family member, often at great personal cost. There are an estimated 700,000 young carers across the UK. MYTIME support carers as young as five years old, who may be carrying out anything from cooking dinner to laundry to physically helping their family member get up and dressed every morning. The responsibility of caring for another person often means these young people miss out on hobbies, seeing friends and other social activities their peers may take for granted.

Penelope Day, Fundraising Director at MYTIME Young Carers, commented: ‘These remarkable young people work incredibly hard to take care of their families, day in and day out. And that includes Christmas. Many of them never get a day off and that can be exhausting and lonely. So we want to make sure all the young carers in Dorset get to enjoy themselves over the holidays and receive the recognition they deserve for what they do. Throwing them a party and giving them a chance to celebrate together is our little way of saying thank you to them.’

In order to host the biggest Christmas party for young carers the county, and potentially even the country, has ever seen, the MYTIME team need support. One party bag, including a Christmas jumper to wear to the event, presents, and treats, costs £20. With over 600 young carers on the guest list, MYTIME is looking to raise £5,000 to go towards funding this ‘Operation Christmas’ mission. As well as fundraising, MYTIME is looking for volunteers to help write cards, pack the goody bags and deliver them between the 6th and 10th December.

Penelope continued: ‘We know we’ve set ourselves a challenge: hosting a party for every young carer in Dorset is a big job. That’s why we need help. We’re looking for our very own Christmas elves to help us with everything from writing a Christmas card to delivering Christmas jumpers. If you want to help us spread some Christmas cheer, please get in touch!’

To find out more about MYTIME Young Carers and volunteer your help, visit https://www.mytimeyoungcarers.org/. Or visit the JustGiving page to donate: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/operation-christmas.

#Hair2Care and the MYTIME2Care Calendar: our biggest campaigns to date!

#Hair2Care and the MYTIME2Care Calendar: our biggest campaigns to date!

In the run-up to Young Carers Action Day on March 16th 2021, we decided that we wanted to do something different, something new and something MEGA to elevate awareness and galvanize action on behalf of young carers everywhere.

Through the MYTIME2Care Calendar, we invited our supporters to make like a young carer, by going above and beyond for their families, for their communities and for themselves. Young carers are inspiring: they demonstrate selflessness and compassion every day, and we could all stand to learn a lot from them. That's exactly why the MYTIME2Care Calendar participants committed to doing a good deed every day throughout the month of March.

In addition to this, on Young Carers Action Day itself, we asked our communities one important question: How would they wear their hair to show they care? Supporters embraced bold colours, quirky styles, and whacky wigs, and took to social media to prove to young carers that they are seen, heard and valued. Our #Hair2Care campaign went national and represented a true celebration of the incredible contribution that young carers make to our society, day in and day out.

Hair2Care and the MYTIME2Care Calendar attracted attention from the BBC, Gaydio, Dorset Biz News, soap stars Scott Maslen and Debra Stephenson, and international DJ Seamus Haji. Celebrity hairdresser Lee Stafford even donated £100 worth of haircare goods as a prize to be awarded to the most show-stopping #Hair2Care style.

Businesses and schools alike signed themselves up to take part in both campaigns. Schools also seized the opportunity to showcase our young carer created assembly designed to explain who a young carer is and what they do. We offer our complete gratitude to the courageous young carers who took time away from their busy caring roles to help create this moving video.

As if all this wasn't enough, on Young Carers Action Day, over 150 young carers across the UK from MYTIME and the Young Carers National Voice joined us for an online party with the phenomenal 'Non-Stop Kids Entertainment'.

In total, we raised £10,000 to support our work with young carers. Over £5000 generated from the Young Carers Action Day #Hair2Care campaign will help protect young carers futures' by funding our Level Up Programme and Employability Programme.

Thank you to EVERYONE that took part during March and joined us on our mission to level the playing field for young carers. Your support means the world to us and the young carers we are so privileged to support.

We simply cannot wait to do this all over again!

What a Difference a Day Makes

What a Difference a Day Makes

It had been six long months of lockdown, and six long months since we'd been able to take our young carers out for the day, but in August - at long last - our face-to-face activity days were finally back in action!

Our Memory-Making programme has been running since our foundation in 2013. Its purpose is to create for young carers much needed opportunities for relaxation, leisure and social connection. By hosting groups of up to 20 young carers and organising fun and enriching activities for them to take part in, we hope to help young carers feel part of a community and maintain positive mental health.

Our first day back in full swing took place at Burnbake Ropes Course in Rempstone Forest. There, a high ropes course, low ropes course and even a trapeze lay in wait for our young carers to try their hand at. After months pent up inside, it seemed the perfect place to let the kids blow off some steam.

In any group of young carers, there's always a range of characters, and that day's group were no different to any other. Some were bold and brave, and would have been swinging from the treetops within the first five minutes had they had the chance. Others were more apprehensive - fearful of heights, or nervous about meeting new people. One, in particular - the little girl with the bright green raincoat - seemed almost frozen to the spot when she arrived. She was quiet. Shy. She knew none of the other children and looked uncomfortable. I understood her position. After months of lockdown, this was new to us all, and nobody could have blamed her for needing time to warm up.

First things first, we ate some lunch. Caught up on everything we'd missed during lockdown. Shared thoughts and feelings about going back to school. Several of the more nervous children seemed visibly to relax within minutes, and to open up. But the little girl in the bright green raincoat remained mute. I kept an eye on her. Tried to put her at ease.

After lunch, the instructors arrived and introduced themselves. They gave the kids their harnesses and helmets, and divided them up into groups. By now, the children were laughing and joking with one another, chatting as if they'd known each other for years. All except one. The little girl in the bright green raincoat. I caught her eye and gave her a smile.

As the first child prepared to brave the dizzying heights of the high ropes course, I turned away to grab myself a helmet. I put it on, clipped it up, stepped into my harness. When I turned back, I couldn't believe my eyes. The child was already at the very tip-top of the course, swinging from monkey bars some thirty feet up in the sky. Even more amazing? It was the girl in the bright green raincoat. As she made her descent, the other young carers whooped and cheered, and by the time she reached the floor, a very definite smile had spread across her face.

As less confident climbers stepped forward one by way to take their turn, she showed patience and enormous kindness in supporting them to overcome their fears. By the end of the day, the little girl in the green raincoat was giving instructions, sharing techniques and asking others for their advice. She was one of the gang - almost a different child to the child that had arrived that morning. It's remarkable: the difference that just one day can make. For some, a group of supportive peers can have huge impact. For others, it's about having the chance to try something new, and turn off from everyday stresses. For the little girl in the bright green raincoat, it was about excelling at something and feeling accepted and admired by her peers.

Before she left, she completed a survey for us. She ticked the box that said she'd gained more confidence. She ticked the box that said she'd made friends. Even better, she ticked the box that said she'd like to come back and take part in another MYTime activity.

And who knows the impact that the next day out might have on her? It was a wonderful day, for the girl in the green raincoat, for all the children, and for me too. Now, on the brink of a second lockdown, our activity days are on pause once again. But one thing's for sure. Our Memory-Making Programme will be back in full swing just as soon as it is able to be, and that day can't come a minute too soon!