Full-time carer struggling to hold family together during coronavirus disruption

Posted by / Tuesday 24 March 2020 / Campaigns
Zoo 2

Helen, 50, from Devon is a full-time carer for her seven-year-old, Sam, who is autistic. The family has just been managing to get by thanks to her husband’s earnings as a taxi driver, but the impact of coronavirus is already hitting their income hard.

“We’re literally living hand to mouth and when my husband said he’d only had a couple of driving jobs in a day, I didn’t know what to do. Our main worry is if it comes to the point where money runs out. What if we can’t put food on the table or how long before we can get Universal Credit? What if we get ill and are stuck in lockdown? Nobody has an answer.

Sam train

“On top of that, routine is essential with Sam’s autism – I’ve been worrying about things like what we’re going to tell him now we can’t afford chicken nuggets for tea. He loves school, but once they’ve closed for most kids he might have to attend a random school that has provision and that will be really unsettling.

“I’m struggling mentally and trying not to panic, to hold the family together, but I’m also thinking ‘what next? Or wondering where I can find bread and milk. It’s hurting the children too - lot of parents are saying kids who are normally quite together have been upset and in tears.”

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