School wins award for being a champion of young carers

KINGFIELD Primary School in Old Woking has received the Surrey Young Carers Angel Award for its support of the school’s young carers.

The award recognises its work championing young carers, those children who look after an unwell or disabled family member.

RECOGNITION – Surrey Young Carers education advisor Naima Hussain presents the Angel Award to the team at Kingfield Primary School: (from left), inclusion lead Helen Sweeney, Lisa Prior, home-school link worker, and head teacher David Jackson

Naima Hussain, Surrey Young Carers education advisor for North-West Surrey, praised the school’s enthusiasm in working for the award in difficult circumstances. 

“Kingfield Primary School has always been very keen to support its young carers,” said Naima. “It jumped at the opportunity of the Angel Award and despite the lockdown challenges managed to meet all the criteria.

“Now, as a school, and with the help of the Angel Award, it has a perfect framework in which to support and identify its young carers.”                          

Surrey Young Carers, part of Action for Carers Surrey, developed the award working with young carers, and launched it in 2019.

The aim is to recognise schools that are providing clear support for their young carers, and to encourage all schools to do more.

On average, there are at least two young carers in every class looking after a family member, according to SYC.

They often face challenges because of their caring role, leading to them falling behind in their work, not meeting their potential and facing bullying.

To achieve the award, schools have to meet eight standards, checked by Surrey Young Carers staff and young carers themselves.

They include having a carers’ champion, a carers’ support group, training for staff, and assemblies about young carers to help all pupils understand the issues the young carers face, as well as supporting pupils to self-identify and find the help they need.

“Achieving the Angel Award for our school recognises our commitment to the wellbeing of our vulnerable young people,” said Lisa Prior, home-school link worker at Kingfield.

“It was fun working towards the award, and demonstrates to parents, carers and visitors that we acknowledge the challenges young carers face.

“Having the award will help our young carers to feel supported and valued members of the Kingfield School community.”

For more information, visit www.actionforcarers.org.uk. Carers can call 0303 040 1234, text  07714 075993, or email carersupport@actionforcarers.org.uk; young carers can email syc@actionforcarers.org.uk.

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