Helping to care for a loved one can be quite challenging and many young carers experience a range of feelings about their caring role. You might feel happy, worried, upset, frustrated, isolated, stressed or angry and at times you might be unsure of how to deal with this roller-coaster of emotions. If you feel like you would like to have a really good talk with someone about the ups and downs of being a young carer, then our counselling program might just be for you!

As a young carer, sometimes you might face challenging situations like:

  • finding it difficult to concentrate at school, TAFE, uni or work
  • finding it hard to make time for your friends
  • worrying about your family member’s health
  • feeling overloaded with responsibilities
  • finding it hard to relax

If this sounds like you or someone you know, that’s ok, read on to see how we can help!

What is counselling?

Seeing a counsellor is a chance for you to talk to someone about your life as a young carer and how this makes you feel. It will also give you the opportunity to work out some ideas for dealing with any challenging situations. Whatever you say to the counsellor will remain private, unless you share something that shows that your own safety is at risk. It might feel a little weird in the beginning to share your feelings with a stranger, that’s totally understandable! However, you don’t need to worry, the counsellor will have experience working with young people and will have an understanding of the issues that young carers face.

What types of counselling are available?

Counselling is available to you wherever you live in NSW and you can choose to have counselling face to face or over the phone, by yourself or as part of a group!

  • Face to face counselling: Our carer counselling program can connect you to a trained counsellor in your local area. Sessions will last for one hour and you can be linked in with up to six sessions. Our counsellors work across metro and rural areas of NSW.
  • One to one telephone counselling: This is the same as face to face counselling but over the telephone with a carer specialist counsellor. All you need is the use of a telephone and somewhere private to talk for one hour at a time, up to six times.
  • Talk-Link: This is group telephone counselling with other people who might be in a similar caring role to you. Young carers get different things out of participating in Talk-Link. For some, Talk-Link provides the opportunity to explore the emotional impact of caring, identify ways of managing everyday life and to share experiences. For others, it is a great way to connect with other carers so you feel less alone. Each group has a minimum of six carers and two facilitators. These sessions are free, last for one hour, and run the same time each week for six weeks.

What are the benefits of counselling for young carers?

You might find that talking to someone who doesn’t know you or your family can help a lot. Every young carer is an individual, but some of the benefits of counselling for young carers include:

  • Building coping skills
  • Feeling heard, understood & validated
  • Increased feelings of confidence and a sense of control
  • Feeling less isolated
  • Reinforcement of identity beyond the carer role
  • Development of self-care strategies
  • Linking to relevant supports and services

How much will it cost?

We ask for a small donation, but if you can’t pay, that’s ok. Nobody will be denied access based on their ability to pay.

Sounds great! How can I organise counselling?

Carers NSW can link you in with counselling through the National Carer Counselling Program (NCCP). To organise counselling, find out more about the program or to chat about how it may benefit you, call the Young Carer Team on 1800 242 636 (Monday to Friday, 9am – 5pm) or email us at [email protected].