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Surrey Uncovered: A new report into the surprising need in Surrey

Carer photo

6:00am 19th June 2017
(Updated 1:05pm 19th June 2017)

When you think of Surrey - you may think of it as a wealthy county.

However, The Community Foundation for Surrey has released an updated version of their 2013 report, titled “Surrey Uncovered”.

The aim of the report is to show what it is really like living in the county, focusing on the needs of local people.

Some of the figures are actually higher than those published in 2013.

The most startling figures from the 2017 report include:

  • There are around 24,000 girls and women in Surrey aged 16-59 have been the victim of domestic abuse.
  • There are roughly 14,000 young carers and over 30,000 carers over 65 in Surrey.
  • 10% of children in Surrey live in poverty.
  • 421 local people were facing homelessness in 2016/17.
  • Disadvantaged children are one year behind children from middle income families with their vocabulary, by the age of five.
  • 87% of adults are not exercising at the recommended levels.
  • The fastest growing age group in Surrey is the 85+ population.

One of these young carers from Caterham, Surrey, is Joshua Rooth.

He is seventeen years old and cares for his father, who has Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

His Dad got diagnosed with MS three years ago, but Joshua has been caring for him for the last five or six years.

He said: “Any kids who are out there struggling with it, you know you’re not alone and you know there are kids much younger than you, much older than you who are in the same spot.

“Don’t feel like you’re alone, because there are also people there to help you.

“For the amount of stuff he does and the kind of person he is, I don’t feel like that at all when looking after him.

“I feel, you know, quite privileged to be able to help him like that.

“He’s been an amazing man in all of our lives and people around.”

There is concern Surrey charities struggle to attract outside funding - because of its reputation as a wealthy county.

The charity's chairman David Frank told Eagle because of Surrey's perceived affluence, people do not understand there IS deprivation locally: ""People expect Surrey to be a very affluent county with no deprivation at all.

"This report actually illustrates the reverse is the case - there is stacks of deprivation - it is just masked by the wealth that exists in certain quarters."

Mr Frank said this impacts on local charities's ability to attract funding: "It makes it much more difficult for local charities to raise money because people are much more sceptical about giving locally.

"And that's one of our objectives - to inspire people to give locally by educating them about what the need is."

You can view the whole report here.

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