During this time when families have found themselves more isolated, it is important to reach out to others to find help and support. Through the Area Agency on Aging District 7 (AAA7), a Caregiver Telephone Support Group has been developed for the 10 counties the agency serves which includes Adams, Brown, Gallia, Highland, Jackson, Lawrence, Pike, Ross, Scioto and Vinton. The first call will take place on Thursday, June 18 from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. All family caregivers are welcome and invited to participate.
Each month, the group will offer caregivers time to gain and give support with other caregivers and resources, and educational topics related to caregiving. The monthly telephone support group will be facilitated by staff with the Caregiver Support Program at the AAA7. The telephone option provides caregivers with the opportunity to learn and gain support from each other without leaving their homes.
Caregiving is a loving and giving act, but can bring stress and questions for the one providing care, especially during this time. The Caregiver Telephone Support Group is available for caregivers age 18 and older who are providing assistance for relatives, friends, neighbors, or others; but are unpaid for the services. This also includes grandparents or other relatives raising children.
The telephone support group will be offered monthly on the third Thursday of each month. The first call will take place in June, but the group is open and ongoing each month.
If you are interested in learning more about the Telephone Caregiver Support Group at the AAA7 or to register for the next call, call Vicki Woyan at the AAA7. She can be reached by calling 1-800-582-7277, ext. 215, or you can also email firstname.lastname@example.org. In order to receive the conference call information for the call, you must preregister prior to June 18.
The Caregiver Support Program at the AAA7 has been in existence since 2000 and is funded by the federal Older Americans Act. It provides caregivers with services that can help reduce stress, in addition to resources that can aid with providing better care for not only the loved one, but the individual caregiver as well. Caregivers age 18 and over are eligible for the caregiver support program services in addition to grandparents raising grandchildren.
Services provided through the AAA7 Caregiver Support Program include assessments, training, information, assistance, counseling, and answers to everyday problems. Any caregiver in AAA7’s 10-county service area who wishes to receive these services is able to with no eligibility requirements. Additional services that require eligibility requirements include respite and supplemental services that could include a resource or product that is needed to complement the care provided, such as medical supplies, home safety equipment, legal services, and more.
Submitted by Jenni Lewis, director of community outreach and training, Area Agency on Aging District 7, Inc.