Miguel, 15, cares for two of his younger siblings, who have epilepsy and ADD, and for his mother.
Most days are pretty crazy. I help get everyone ready in the morning with breakfast and getting dressed. Then I’ll get myself ready. I’m in Year 9 at school so school is pretty busy.
After school I have to come straight home to help around the house and try to play with my younger brother so he’s not getting into trouble around mum. Then we have dinner and I help the younger kids get ready for bed before I can start studying. So I don’t get much time to do my assignments.
I miss out on a lot being a carer. With mum being so sick she can’t work, so we don’t have a lot of money. That means I can’t do a lot of fun things. I’ve wanted to play basketball for ages but since mum can’t get me to training or to the games I can’t play.
I also wanted to do cadets but it’s too hard to get there with everything at home and the cost.
I joined the Young Carers program with Carers ACT last year and that’s been really good. It helped with school uniforms and school shoes and even my Year 9 school camp.
It was great to have a few days break from caring. It’s done heaps of other stuff too like helping me get my Responsible Service of Alcohol certificate so I could get a part-time job at the shop down the road.
A few weeks ago I did a great cooking program. I learned some easy recipes to help out with dinner at home and got to hang out with other young carers like me each week.
Carers ACT also took me to a media training course and up to Parliament House to meet some politicians. I even got to go on TV and radio to talk about being a young carer!
So yeah, I’ve done a bunch of cool things I probably wouldn’t have done if I hadn’t gone to Carers ACT.