A SOUTH Tyneside group is aiming to give something back to the young people who care for their loved ones.
Young Carers South Tyneside has been nominated for Community Group of the Year.
The organisation was put forward for the award, which is sponsored by South Tyneside Homes, by Tara Johnson.
She said: “When becoming a parent seven years ago, now of two lovely children, I was faced with something that I can only describe as the difficult time as a mother when your child doesn’t enjoy her day at school because she knows you are different from other mums, and is worried about who is looking after me while she is at school.
“Feeling at a complete loss, I was unaware at the time that my child had become a young carer overnight and I wanted her to regain her childhood.
“This was when I found my lifeline – Young Carers South Tyneside.”
The group’s project manager, Karen Ahmed, said: “I’m really honoured that someone has said such lovely things about the group. When I came into this job in 2003, there were 100 or more young carers registered. We began raising awareness of our project by going into schools.
“We also have a link person in schools to ensure that people are identified as young carers. We offer respite services and do a Duke of Edinburgh Awards scheme, and take trips to Thurston and even France.
“We also offer one-to-one support and after school activities at Ridgeway Children’s Centre in South Shields.
“It feels marvellous to be nominated, and I’m just honoured that someone has spoken about the project in this way and thinks it deserves an award.
“It’s fantastic for the young carers to be recognised.”
Entries are now closed. The awards ceremony will be held at the Quality Hotel in Witney Way, Boldon Colliery, on the evening of Thursday, June 12.
Young Performer nominees will be invited to take part in a talent showcase at the Customs House tomorrow night, to help the judges make their decision.