SEAFORD: Mum’s appeal for her son’s carers charity

Karen Lowles and her son James
Karen Lowles and her son James

A DISABLED mum from Seaford is trying to raise awareness of a charity that has supported her carer son.

Karen Lowles’ 13-year-old lad James has been looking after her since he was four-years-old.

Now his mum is keen to highlight Young Carers (YC) which takes people like James for holidays and days out.

YC is an off-shoot of the charity Care for the Carers which supports unpaid carers who look after a relative, friend or neighbour. It supports people like James. But now the charity is worried a lack of funds could restrict this.

Miss Lowles, of Cradle Hill Road, said YC had funded trips for James, who is autistic and diabetic, and other carers so they have the chance to meet people in the same situation and also enjoy activities.

Although Care for the Carers does receive financial help from the county council and the NHS Miss Lowles says this only stretches so far.

The 41-year-old, who has health problems including diabetes, ME and three years ago she broke her back, added, “It’s a really, really good charity. My son finds it very hard to deal with my illnesses but he joined the Young Carers and is so much more relaxed about having to help. He’s such a great kid.”

The mum-of-two said James often helps her in and out of bed, does the shopping and pushes her around in her wheelchair. There are 51,000 carers in East Sussex looking after family members or friends - estimated to be saving local health and social care economy £700m a year.

Partnership manager Jennifer Twist said, “Parts of our services we are quite worried about and one is Young Carers where funding is only guaranteed for six months.”

Cheryl Butler, Young Carers team leader, added, “We try to do an activity every holiday. We tend to have a little bit more going on in the summer.

“We also have youth clubs once a month - a chance to meet with other young people in a similar situation, build friendships and gain peer support. Without funding the clubs can’t go forward.”

If anyone can support Care for the Carers, whether with transport to venues or donations call 738390.