Life in lockdown for siblings of disabled children

Date: 6th August 2020
Category: Family Environment and Alternative Care, Basic Health and Welfare

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A survey by Sibs has found that COVID-19 has led to increased caring responsibilities, isolation and poorer mental health issues for siblings of disabled children.

Sibs was set up in 2001 and is the only UK charity supporting brothers and sisters of disabled children and adults. Siblings can often grow up receiving less attention, have more worries than their peers and face challenging home lives. The charity provides direct support to siblings and workshops for parents and professionals.

The survey gathered responses from 876 parents about the impact of COVID-19 on the lives of their sibling children. Key findings included:

  • A majority (76%) of parents felt the mental health of siblings had worsened
  • Half of siblings provided more care in lockdown
  • 1 in 3 siblings have felt isolated and missed support from family and friends

Support services for siblings of disabled children have decreased drastically over the last decade and this issue has been exacerbated during lockdown, profoundly impacting on the wellbeing of siblings.

Read the report here.