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Every summer, YMCA Fairthorne Manor hosts the largest festival in the world for young people with a caring responsibility at home.

Created in 2000 and run in partnership with The Children’s Society, the weekend provides opportunities for young people to enjoy a break from their responsibilities, have fun, make new friends and have their voices heard on issues that affect them.   Consultation with young carers has resulted in two changes in legislation to help support their needs and those of their families.

From April to June 2023, we are one of Yeo Valley’s chosen charities for their Yeokens donations with the winning charity receiving £1500 which will help support the festival, providing respite and a weekend away for young carers from across the UK. Donating is easy, you just need to create a Yeokens account, scan or enter the code from the product you’ve bought and donate to your chosen cause. Details here: Yeo Valley Yeokens.

YCF 2022 at YMCA Fairthorne Manor

2023 festival 

The festival was back with a bang in all its full glory in 2022 with over 800 young carers and their leaders enjoying a weekend to remember in the glorious summer sunshine.    

We are busy making plans for the 2023 festival which will take place over the weekend of Friday 30th June to Sunday 2nd July 2023, so gather your group, think about you’re going to fund your tickets and get organising! 

There will be the core ingredients of fireworks, radio station, Voice Zone, silent disco, chill out/pamper zone, live bands, adventurous activities and more…

For more details or to talk to one of our team, contact us on 01489 785228 Monday-Friday or [email protected].

YCF 2022 with Oritse Williams at YMCA Fairthorne Manor

Who is the festival for?

The Young Carers Festival is aimed at secondary school aged young carers from 11-16 years, with all young carers attending as part of an organised group.  In 2022, we adjusted the age group so that young carers aged 17 that may have missed out in 2020 and 2021 could attend. After looking at the feedback, we’re glad to say we will be welcoming 17 year-olds again in 2023! 

If you’re a young carer but not linked with a support group, find the local group in your area via The Children’s Society, one of our festival partners.  The festival is a great way to meet new friends or get to know others better.

YCF 2022 at YMCA Fairthorne Manor

Booking information

Places booked for the festival include camping (choose from YMCA tents or bring your own), all meals and a full programme of fun stuff including bands, outdoor activities, fireworks and more. Early bird rates if booked by 31st March! Please note that day passes are not available for this event.

Leader info events

if you’re a leader and have never brought a group before but want to know more, contact us on [email protected] or 01489 785228 to arrange a chat with one of our team.

YCF 2022 at YMCA Fairthorne Manor

What happens at the festival?

For young carers, the weekend is yours! Chill out under a tree, listen to the onsite radio station and chat to friends or dip into the packed programme of outdoor activities, live bands, fairground rides, karaoke and much more. 

Your ticket price includes all activities, meals and tented accommodation (book one of our tents or bring your own) – the only thing you may need money for is treats from the Manor shop or the onsite cafe outside of meal times.

Check out the video links below for highlights of previous festivals.

2022 festival highlights

Check out the highlights from the 2022 edition, the first full festival since 2019. 

The 2022 Festival report was created following consultation at the Voice Zone at the 2022 festival, capturing the views of young carers and the key themes of their experiences.  These views help us shape the festival and influence change with government all year round.



Fairthorne Manor is located midway between Southampton and Portsmouth in Hampshire. Find us at YMCA Fairthorne Manor, Curdridge, Southampton, Hampshire SO30 2GH, just a mile outside of Botley.

YCF 2022 at YMCA Fairthorne Manor