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ERIC Number: EJ955962
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1089-5701
Bringing Young Carers out of the Shadows
Charles, Grant
Reclaiming Children and Youth, v20 n3 p26-30 2011
As helpers, it is easy for people to focus on the problems that the families with whom they are working are experiencing. After all, the problems are often right in front of them, are quite easy to see, and, in fact, it is often those very problems that are the reason they have become involved with families in the first place. Sometimes, though, they do not see what is actually going on in front of them or they mistake what they are seeing for something else. Occasionally they focus only on one part of what they are seeing and they miss the larger picture. They see the presenting issues but do not see the more powerful underlying dynamics occurring on a daily basis within the family. They see some of the struggles the family is experiencing but do not recognize the coping mechanisms the family members are utilizing nor the strengths they have, even though they are often dealing with very difficult situations. A classic example of where people miss the strengths of the collective family and the individual family members is in families where a young person has to step forward to take on adult responsibilities because of parental struggles with illness, addictions, disability, or desertion. These young carers are a population of young people who are often ignored in North America. This is surprising given that they make up an estimated 3% to 12% of the population of young people under the age of 25. This article focuses on how their struggles are often unseen, thus making it unnecessarily difficult for young people as they strive to help their families deal with hardships that often appear overwhelming to those outside the family.
Reclaiming Children and Youth. PO Box 57 104 N Main Street, Lennox, SD 57039. Tel: 605-647-2532; Fax: 605-647-5212; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: North America