ABS surveys and other sources have shed some light on carers in Australia. By better understanding carers' characteristics and demographics, we are better able to provide advocacy and advice to support them.
Some quick statistics:
- 2.7 million unpaid carers in Australia 
- more than 770,000 carers are primary carers 
- 300,000 carers are under the age of 24 
- 150,000 carers are under the age of 18 
- over 1.5 million carers are of working age (18-64) 
- 31,600 Indigenous carers are over the age of 15 
- 620,000 carers were born outside Australia 
- 366,700 carers were born in non-English speaking countries 
- 520,000 carers are over 65 years of age 
- the estimated annual replacement value of care provided in 2012 is over $40.9 billion 
- it is estimated that carers provided 1.32 billion hours of unpaid care in 2010, with productivity loss estimated at $6.5 billion 
- On average carers spend approximately 40 hours per week providing care. It is estimated that carers of someone with a mental illness spend on average 104 hours per week in the caring role. 
1 ABS (2012) Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers.
2 ABS (2008) Summary of Findings: ABS Census of Population and Housing, Health and Welfare of Australia's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People.
3 ABS (2003) Migrants, Disability, Ageing and Carers.
4 ABS (2009) Survey of Disability, Ageing and Carers.
5 Access Economics (2010) The Economic Value of Informal Care in 2010.
6 Mental Health Council of Australia and Carers Australia (2000) Carers of People with Mental Illness.