Honeypot Children’s Charity backs report by Carers UK

 

Hampshire based Honeypot Children’s Charity, who offer respite and outreach support to young carers aged 5 – 12 years old across the South, have spoken out in support of a new report published today by Carers UK. The report states that 8 out of 10 carers have felt isolated or lonely due to their caring role.

Honeypot says this report reflects the lives of children like Bethany, who is eight years old and is the primary carer for her father. Bethany, who was being bullied at school when she was first referred to Honeypot, has been supported by the charity for three years. Initially, her confidence levels were low and her responsibilities meant that she couldn’t enjoy any of the activities that her peers benefited from. Bethany confided in care staff that she found it difficult to make friends because she couldn’t join in with other children; she did not have a single memory of going to the beach, on holiday, or to the cinema. As a result, she became increasingly lonely and would cry herself to sleep at night. Since being supported by Honeypot Children’s Charity, Bethany has made more friends at school and has developed more confidence.

Simmi Woodwal, Chief Executive of Honeypot Children’s Charity, says:  “We wholeheartedly agree with the findings of this report. In our day to day work, we are seeing more and more evidence that being a carer can lead to isolation, loneliness and sometimes even bullying. Many of the children we support lack the social skills required to interact with children at school, and count the person they care for as their only friend. By giving children the opportunity to make the most of their one chance at childhood, we hope to begin to reverse this trend. However, with virtually no government funding, we know we have a hard task ahead of us.”

Children are able to visit Honeypot House in the New Forest in order to escape the responsibilities they face at home. A Play Bus also visit’s boys and girls in their own community, where children who first made friends on their respite break have the opportunity to meet each other again.

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