National Family Caregivers Month
Each November, National Family Caregivers Month (NFCM) offers an opportunity to recognize and spotlight the important work done by family caregivers. The holiday also provides a chance to raise awareness and build supportive opportunities around common issues faced by these individuals.
Today, more than 1 in 5 American adults are caregivers. This number will continue to accelerate as the baby boomer generation ages and friends and family members step in to support them.
The national observance is spearheaded by Caregiver Action Network (CAN), a nonprofit that provides free education, peer support, and resources to family caregivers. CAN announced this year’s theme, #CaregiverAnd which encourages family caregivers to celebrate the passions and interests that enrich their lives.
Here at Calvary, our goal is to help raise awareness, share resources, and extend our support to caregivers everywhere. We see you, we support you and we honor the important work you do. For prospective, about 41.8 million Americans have provided unpaid care, in the past 12 months. (National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP; 2020 Caregiving in the U.S.) The average duration of caregiving is 4 1/2 years. 89% of them cared for a relative, usually their own parents or in-laws. (National Alliance for Caregiving and AARP; 2020 Caregiving in the U.S.)
Every day, millions of Americans provide essential care and medical assistance to their loved ones. These acts of love, commitment, and compassion enable their family members to receive the support they need to live a life with dignity. This has been especially true throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, during which Americans of all ages have made substantial sacrifices to keep family members safe and healthy. During National Family Caregivers Month, we recognize the important role of our Nation’s family caregivers and thank them for the invaluable and instrumental care they provide.
It’s no surprise that caregivers often neglect their own needs to care for their loved ones.
“It is essential that caregivers make time every day to attend to their own physical and emotional needs-doing so will, in fact, make them better caregivers in the long run,” said Kate Mohan, LMSW, Assistant Director of Support Services, Calvary Hospice.
Acknowledge when you are overwhelmed and need help.
Seek out other family members and friends who may provide valuable respite for you.
Eat meals regularly and get enough sleep.
Do meditation, yoga, and other forms of exercise.
Seek professional help.
Family Caregivers Month is a time to recognize, praise, and support the 40 million Americans caring for a family member in need.
The CareGiver Action Network (link name to: https://www.caregiveraction.org/) offers many tools and resources for the public including:
Connect to Caregiver Action Network, post a message, ask a question or offer support to other caregivers.
Resources for Family Caregivers: