‘While they care for others, we care for them’: Tallahassee teenager looking to highlight youth caregivers

Published: Feb. 18, 2021 at 11:21 PM EST|Updated: Feb. 18, 2021 at 11:23 PM EST
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Back in 2019, WCTV introduced you to a Tallahassee woman who had devoted her life to caring for her mother with Alzheimer’s Disease. She wanted to inspire other caregivers who might be struggling, and it seems she inspired someone within her own household.

Her 15-year-old daughter is now working to bring awareness to youth caregivers.

“My whole goal and mission is to see as many people smile and feel great when they are going through rough times,” Kaylin Jean-Louis told WCTV’s Katie Kaplan. “Caring as a youth, it can get stressful. There are times that can be taxing.”

According to the American Psychological Association, there are 1.4 million children between the ages of 8 and 18 in the United States who are caring for an older adult or a sibling.

Jean-Louis was inspired after her grandmother’s diagnosis six years ago.

“As I started to get older and see what I truly could help with, I started realizing there are things I can help with too,” she said.

Jean-Louis created the non-profit foundation, Kaylin’s Caring Konnection, and started her own podcast called ‘Inspiring Moments with Kaylin,’ which she uses as platforms to spread positivity, and help raise awareness and bring other youth caregivers together.

In past years, she has collected hundreds of toys for the local homeless shelter and raised hundreds of dollars for Tallahassee’s healthcare heroes who are working the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, she wants to honor others like her through her Youth Caregiver Awareness Drive.

“The whole purpose is to recognize the outstanding, loving care youth caregivers give to a loved one,” said Jean-Louis. “We want them to know, while they care for others, we care for them.”

The call for nominations for the Youth Caregiver Awareness Drive runs through March 7. Three winners will be chosen and can win up to $300.

People can nominate youth caregivers between the ages of 8 to 18 by filling out a form here.

The winners will be announced live during Kaylin’s podcast on Sunday, March 7.

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