How Support Groups Help
You are not alone. We offer various caregiver support programs on a weekly and monthly basis. Our free support groups provide a gathering place for caregivers to share their sorrows and problems, their joys and successes, and find solutions and share resources. They help relieve the caregiver role strain in a safe and nurturing environment.
In most support groups, you’ll collaboratively exchange ideas and feedback; you’ll not only get help, but you’ll also be able to help others. Our mission is to connect you with others on a similar journey, if you would like a specific type of group or in your area, we would be glad to help find the one. We look forward to connecting soon!
Why Join a Support Group?
Support groups connect you with others who 'get it', and you have the opportunity to share your experiences with others in similar situations. Here are a few benefits of sharing your journey with others.
Sharing common experiences and learning coping strategies
Exploring and sharing solutions to problems
Finding emotional outlets and receiving support from peers
Forming new friendships and discovering a sense of community
Developing new skills through education
Helping others while still helping yourself
The benefits of making connections with other people who understand.
Belonging to a group or community gives us a sense of identity. It helps us understand who we are and feel part of something larger than ourselves.
Researchers have found that people are happier when they are with other people than when they are alone—and the “boost” is the same for introverts and extroverts. Studies show that maintaining a social support system also benefits your mental well-being,
Happiness is surprisingly contagious! Studies show that happiness benefits other people like a ripple effect. So spreading our happiness can make a huge difference.
Smiling, even when you don't feel like it, makes you happy! Research shows the very act of smiling can boost mood, reduce stress and improve your immune system. "Smiling can trick your brain into believing you’re happy which can then spur actual feelings of happiness. When you smile, the brain sees the muscle [activity] and assumes that humor is happening.” Read more
The positive effects from connecting with others are lasting. We are more likely to continue our close relationships, and to continue to receive positive emotions from them.
What Community Services are Available for Caregivers?
There are services available to help caregivers in many communities. Some services are free and some are based on ability to pay or covered by the care receiver’s insurance. Leeza’s Care Connection is an excellent example of a community as well as online program that is offered free of charge to family caregivers.
Services that may be available in your community include adult day care centers, home health aides, home-delivered meals, respite care, transportation services, and skilled nursing.
Caregiver services in your community
Call your local Area Agency on Aging, senior center, senior services organization, county information and referral service, university gerontology department, or hospital social work unit for contact suggestions.
Caregiver support for veterans
If your care recipient is a U.S. Veteran they may qualify for home health care, financial support, nursing home care, and adult day care benefits. Some Veterans Administration programs are free, while others require co-payments, depending upon the veteran’s status, income, and other criteria.
Your family member’s affiliations
Fraternal organizations such as the Elks, Eagles, or Moose lodges may offer some assistance if your family member is a longtime dues-paying member. This help may be phone check-ins, home visits, or transportation.
Community transportation services
Many community transportation services are free for your care recipient, while others may have a nominal fee or ask for a donation. Your local Area Agency on Aging can help you locate transportation to and from adult day care, senior centers, shopping malls, and doctor’s appointments.
Telephone reassurance provides pre-scheduled calls to homebound older adults to reduce their isolation and monitor their well-being. Check with local religious groups, senior centers, and other public or nonprofit organizations.
Adult day care
If your loved one is well enough, consider the possibility of adult day care. An adult day care center can provide you with needed breaks during the day or week, and your loved one with some valuable socialization and activities.