Meet the young carers: Scarlett, who’s five; teenager Dylan; Jessica whose little brother needs her help when playing and six year old Chloe who looks after her dad.
Ordinary kids with extraordinary gifts and responsibilities. Their childhood is filled, not just with toys, computer games and playgrounds, but also with fetching and carrying for less-abled parents and siblings and supporting them when out shopping or with their tablets.
To give the young champs a well-earned break, Wigan & Leigh Carers Centre, working with the charity Friends of Young Carers, have been getting them into the Olympic Games' spirit. This week, the youngsters got busy with craft activities to decorate the streets ready for the coming of the Olympic Torch through Wigan Borough on Thursday 31 May 2012.
The craft session was organised by the Carers Centre in Hindley, through centre manager Pauline Gregson. Pauline says: “Since opening in June 2010, the Carers Centre has been providing practical and emotional support for carers of all ages. We are delighted to help ensure that young carers can play an important role in this major local event whilst also giving them some respite from their caring roles.”
The Olympic Torch route comes through Hindley just after 5pm on 31 May; up Cross Street and Market Street, onto Danes Avenue and finally out towards Westhoughton and Bolton. Events are planned on the day including a salute from the Veterans on the town hall steps and live music. The young carers’ flags, bunting and banner will be on show as the Torch comes past.
Wigan Council’s Nick Burdekin, Olympic Torch Co-ordinator, adds: “We are all working hard across the borough so as many people as possible can enjoy the Torch Relay. To see this dedicated group busy and enjoying themselves to support the Torchbearers is fantastic. My thanks to all the young carers for getting wholeheartedly involved.”