Jessica's Story

I am 10 years old and have three sisters. One of them has Asperger’s and ADHD. It means my mum has to spend more time with her when she has meltdowns. Sometimes she has to sit with her for hours.

It’s a bit hard as I have to keep my younger sisters out of the way and hope they don’t say anything to make more stress. I hold their hands and whisper to them when they ask what’s wrong. They are too young to really understand. 

Sometimes her tantrums can go on for hours.

Being part of Barnardo’s Young Carers means I get a break. They organise trips out and they give me time to talk about things, I really enjoy it.

I also get to meet other children with brothers and sisters like mine so I can talk to them about what it’s like and they understand.


Barnardo’s runs services across the UK to support disadvantaged families. For example we help young carers and their families find the support they are entitled to and we provide advice and emotional support. We also provide opportunities for young carers to take a break from their caring responsibilities.

Find out more about how we support disadvantaged families

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Emergency numbers

If you think that a child is in immediate danger please dial 999. Alternatively please contact your local authority social care department, or the NSPCC 24 hour child protection helpline listed below.

If you are a child who needs help, please call Childline on 0800 11 11.

Alternatively, please call 0808 800 5000 to discuss your concerns with the NSPCC 24 Hour Child Protection Helpline.

If you are concerned about a Barnardo's member of staff, volunteer or carer please call the relevant national or regional office and speak to a Barnardo's senior manager or children's services representative.