Marking Young Carer’s Action Day, Scotland’s teenage carers are being urged to check if they are eligible for a payment worth nearly £360 annually.
Young Carer Grant is a Scottish Government benefit available to young people aged between 16 and 18 who are caring for someone who receives a disability benefit for an average of 16 hours a week.
The financial support, which is one of seven benefits only available in Scotland, is available annually to those who are eligible and can be spent on anything the young person chooses. Subject to parliamentary approval, from 1 April, the payment will increase from £326.65 to £359.65.
The payment is available to those at school, in further education, employed or unemployed. They can apply once a year as long as they remain eligible.
The Scottish Government introduced Young Carer Grant in October 2019 to help young people with caring responsibilities. It is part of a wider package of support available to young carers funded by the Scottish Government.
Minister for Social Security, Ben Macpherson said:
“There are lots of young people with caring responsibilities who may not be aware that they are eligible for financial support as young carers. I would urge anyone who thinks they might be eligible to find out more about the Young Carer Grant and apply for the money they are entitled to.”
Zoe Hepburn, 19, has cared for her mum who has Multiple Sclerosis (MS) since she was seven. She has received three Young Carer Grants since the payments were introduced and says the money has made a significant difference to her life. Zoe said:
“I help out a lot around the house, cooking dinner, and helping Mum with whatever she needs at home.
“The money has really helped out and last year I was able to buy a car with the help of this money. I can now get about much more easily as well as take my mum out or pick up shopping.
“I know how challenging and overwhelming being a young carer can be. I’d encourage anyone who thinks they might be eligible for this money to apply. It was really easy.”