[Sub ID 4732] Domestic responsibility assistance (Carers NSW)

Submission ID: 4732
Organisation name: Carers NSW
Contact name: Ms Sarah Judd-Lam
State: NSW
Contact email: sarahj@carersnsw.org.au
Contact number: 9280 4744

Which priority group of the Try, Test and Learn Fund does your idea support?
Young carers

What need or issue are you trying to address?
Many young carers have limited time to pursue or engage in employment due to the demands of their caring role. Many young carers take responsibility for running their household in addition to addressing the specific needs of their relative, partner or friend. In some cases, a care recipient’s condition may amplify domestic chores, for example continence issues can require constantly doing loads of washing.

In some cases, time saving technologies, such as a dishwasher, slow cooker or robovac, could cut down on some of this time, freeing young carers up to focus more on pursuing their career. However, young carers and their families typically have little disposable income and are unlikely to be able to invest in such devices.

Carers NSW has acquired this understanding as a result of supporting young carers through the Carers NSW Young Carer program, consulting with young carer representatives in relation to this submission, and analysing data from the 41 young carer respondents to the Carers NSW 2016 Carer Survey. Statistical references are drawn from the ABS Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers.

What is your idea?
Time saving support at home would fund two types of low-cost, individualised intervention to assist young carers to fulfil the domestic responsibilities associated with their caring roles. The first would involve small grants for one-off purchases of time saving technology, such as a dishwasher, slow cooker or robovac. Young carers with an interest in this stream would be supported to make a simple application explaining the need and what difference the grant would make to their caring role and workforce participation.

The second stream would provide seed funding to establish local, community-based, volunteer programs to support young carers with various domestic chores, such as cooking meals or mowing the lawn, to free them up to work or seek employment. Members of the public and community groups could apply for this seed funding in order to map local need and establish a network of volunteers. The program could potentially utilise technology to connect young carers with vetted volunteers who could help them. This could operate like a volunteer version of Airtasker.