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Thousands of children acting as young carers

Thousands of children acting as young carers

Nearly 10,000 children aged five to seven are acting as unpaid carers for family members or guardians, according to figures compiled from the 2011 census. The data shows that 177,918 people under 19 in England and Wales were caring for parents, siblings and others – 15,728 of those provided more than 50 hours of care a week. Children between the ages of 10 and 14 made up the largest group of young care providers, with 72,266 providing unpaid care. An 80% increase in the number of five- to seven-year-old carers in England over the last decade was one of the starker trends to emerge, although observers suggested this may be because the size of this group was under-reported in the past. Girls are slightly more likely to be carers than boys, while youngsters from black, Asian or other minority ethnic communities were twice as likely to be one. The Children's Society said that the figures were unlikely to represent the true picture as many child carers remain hidden from the view of authorities.
The Guardian, Page: 11 The Independent, Page: 10 The Daily Telegraph, Page: 4 Daily Express, Page: 11


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