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Maree Todd praises the ‘compassionate team’ at Caithness Klics for supporting young carers

By David G Scott

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Maree Todd MSP for Caithness, Sutherland and Ross has praised Caithness KLICs (Kids Living in Caring Situations) for its invaluable support to young carers in the community, following a recent visit to the centre.

Caithness KLICS, based in Wick, supports young carers from ages 5-18 years old across the county who, for a range of reasons, have taken on caring responsibilities for parents or for brothers or sisters.

Commenting, Ms Todd said: “Carers make an immense contribution to our society by caring for family, friends and neighbours who are disabled or in poor health, but due to the weight of their responsibilities, they can often experience social isolation and physical and mental exhaustion.

Maree Todd MSP (left) and Wendy Thain (project manager at Caithness KLICS). Picture supplied
Maree Todd MSP (left) and Wendy Thain (project manager at Caithness KLICS). Picture supplied

“During my visit to Caithness KLICS, I was inspired to hear of the support offered to young carers in the community. KLICS provide a safe environment where young carers can take a break from their responsibilities, have fun, and be kids.

“This invaluable service is led by a dedicated and compassionate team. I was delighted to have the opportunity to visit and thank them for the support they provide to young carers in Caithness."

In 2019, the Scottish Government launched the Young Carers Grant, a yearly payment of £359.65 for young carers in Scotland.

The payment is available for 16-18-year-olds who spend an average of 16 hours caring for a person or people in receipt of a disability benefit. As long as someone remains eligible, they can apply on an annual basis.

Maree Todd MSP said: “Young carers show incredible dedication to those they care for and it is right that they are supported to provide that help.

“Supporting young carers has been a priority of the Scottish Government, and the Young Carers Grant is a recognition of the important role of unpaid young carers in our society.

“In Scotland, we are building a social security system built on fairness, dignity and respect and the Young Carer’s Grant is just one of several support payments available only in Scotland.

“I would encourage anyone aged between 16 and 18 who provides care or knows anyone who does so to apply for the grant.”

People can apply for the Young Carer Grant online, via a paper application form or by calling Social Security Scotland free on 0800 182 2222.

The Klics charity's original HQ was at the old Wick South Primary School before it moved into the old Playbox Playgroup base near the former Hillhead Primary School in 2020. It has been transformed into a welcoming space for young carers with a pool table, TVs, a book snug, an art room and a kitchen.

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