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What is a Carer?

A carer is anyone, including children and adults who looks after a family member, partner or friend who needs help because of their illness, frailty, disability, a mental health problem or an addiction and cannot cope without their support. The care they give is unpaid. When we refer to carers in this document, this is inclusive of both adult and young carers.

Please click here to download our Carers Information Booklet

Are you an unpaid/informal carer in Essex?

Join us in developing a ground breaking mental health and wellbeing support programme tailored specifically for unpaid/ informal carers like you. A three-month funded programme being led by Provide Community and Mid Essex Recovery College is staring soon – we need your insights and passion.

Please click here to download the details

Join us today For more information, or to take part in the programme please contact:

Email or call on 0300 303 9954

Adult Carers

If you are an adult over 18, you could be one of the 1 in 8 adults currently providing unpaid care and support to an elderly, disabled or seriously ill family member or friend.

Many carers understandably see their relationship with the person they care for as a partner, sibling, parent, child, friend, neighbour not as a carer. Caring for someone is seen as just part of everyday life.

It is important however that carers are identified and that they receive support when they need it.

Caring for someone can put a strain on your own health and wellbeing regardless of how many hours care you provide or whether you are giving emotional, practical or physical help.

Adult Carers
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Young Adult Carers

A young adult carer is a young person aged 16-25 who helps look after someone in their family, or a friend, who is ill, disabled or misuses drugs or alcohol. The aim is to help empower young adult carers to be heard, access services, gain confidence, maintain their emotional and physical well-being, have choices, and enjoy life especially in their future planning for education, employment and training opportunities.

Young Carers

Young Carers are children and young people under 18, whose lives are restricted in some way because of the need for them to give care to another person (usually a family member) who is chronic illness, has a disability (All Types), is experiencing mental ill health, affected by alcohol or drug misuse, or a critical or Terminal condition. The difference between young carers and other young people who help in the home is that young carers are often responsible for someone else in their family in a way that most other young people are not. 

Young Carers
What is a foodbank?

A foodbank distributes food to those who have difficulty purchasing enough to avoid hunger, this can be through food pantries or soup kitchens.


Other concerns and challenges may occur when visiting a foodbank such as struggles with utility bills, debt, money problems and mental health issues.


Non-perishable, in-date food is donated by the public at a range of places, such as schools, churches, and businesses, as well as supermarket collection points.

Visit to find out more information.

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Foodbank vouchers

Foodbanks work with local agencies that can offer help by issuing a foodbank voucher. The agencies include Citizens Advice, Children's centres and health visitors.


When you visit a referral agency, take a form of ID with your address on; they will take some basic details from you to complete the voucher. This will help them to identify the cause of your crisis and offer practical guidance. It also means they are able to prepare suitable emergency food for the right number of people.

Visit to find out more information.

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