A round-up of services and supports around the country and online for caregivers.
There are services out there to help all caregivers. Every Area Agency on Aging (AAA)—which make up a nationwide network of local agencies that provides aging services known as the Aging Network—in the U.S. must have a Family Caregiver Support Program. This program is mandated to provide services and support to family caregivers (both families of origin and families of choice). These programs provide information and referrals, training, individual counseling, support groups, respite care and supplemental assistance to all caregivers.
To locate your local AAA visit the Eldercare Locator [or call 1-800-677-1116] at the National Area Agencies on Aging (n4a) site. For additional caregiver resources in your area, visit the Family Caregivers Alliance’s Family Care Navigator.
In addition, a growing number of LGBT aging organizations, as well as LGBT Community Centers, offer caregiver support programs and social service programs. Visit the following partner organizations of the Resource Center to locate services near you:
Services & Advocacy for GLBT Elders (SAGE)
SAGE provides a number of community services and programs in New York City and around the country through SAGENet Affiliates.
CenterLink’s site features a searchable directory of LGBT Community Centers around the country.
Forge/Transgender Aging Network (Milwaukee, WI)
Provides support to transgender older adults and SOFFA (significant others, friends, family and allies).
GRIOT Circle (New York, NY)
An intergenerational culturally diverse community-based organization serving the needs of the community of lesbians, gay men, bisexual and transgender elders of color over the age of fifty.
The LGBT Aging Project (Boston, MA)
Works to improve services to LGBT older adults by focusing on three areas: LGBT cultural competency training for mainstream elder care providers; advocacy and public policy on state and national levels; and outreach and community building with LGBT elders and caregivers.
Openhouse (San Francisco, CA)
Openhouse builds critically-needed housing, services and community programs to support the health and well-being of LGBT older adults and training service providers to create welcoming, safe and secure environments for the LGBT clients they serve.
PHI (Bronx, NY)
PHI works to improve the lives of people who need home and residential care—and the lives of the workers who provide that care—with the goal of ensuring caring, stable relationships between consumers and workers, so that both may live with dignity, respect, and independence.
Other Caregiving Organizations
The following sites provide general information for individuals providing care for friends, family members, and loved ones.
AARP Caregiving Resource Center
AARP’s guide to caring for parents, friends, and loved ones; includes articles, videos and tips.
Alzheimers Association CareSource™
Online tools and resources for those caring for an individual with Alzheimer’s disease, such as a group calendar to keep track of caregiving tasks, message boards and a housing locator.
Caregiver Information at Medicare.gov
This section of the official U.S. government site for Medicare provides an array of resources for caregivers, such as help with billing, tips on navigating the Medicare system, updated information on benefits, and much more.
Caring From a Distance
Resources and information for those caregivers living far away from their care recipients, including the Caregiver Conferencing program, a facilitated meeting of caregivers conducted by telephone to discuss common issues and decisions.
FCA: Family Caregiver Alliance
A community-based nonprofit organization that addresses the needs of families and friends providing long-term care at home. Provides fact sheets, webinars, and other resources to caregivers. Also offers an LGBT Caregivers Discussion Group, a state-by-state Family Care Navigator, and resources in Spanish and Chinese.
Family Caregiving 101
A site that provides caregivers with the basic tools, skills and information they need to protect their own physical and mental health while they provide high quality care for their loved one. Created by the National Family Caregivers Association (NFCA) and the National Alliance for Caregiving (NAC).
National Alliance for Caregiving’s Family Care Resource Clearinghouse
Includes reviews and ratings of hundreds of books, videos, websites, magazines, fact sheets and other resources addressing the range of issues and questions faced by family caregivers.
National Family Caregivers Association
Offers a virtual library of information and educational materials ranging from national educational campaigns to Tips and Tools for family caregivers, information on agencies and organizations that provide caregiver support, and workshops.
The National Long-Term Care Ombudsman Resource Center
This site includes a state by state locator to find local Long-Term Care Ombudsman. Long-Term Care Ombudsman are advocates for residents of nursing homes, board and care homes and assisted living facilities. Ombudsmen provide information about how to find a facility and what to do to get quality care. Under the federal Older Americans Act, every state is required to have an Ombudsman Program that addresses complaints and advocates for improvements in the long-term care system.
Next Step in Care
Next Step in Care provides easy-to-use guides to help family caregivers and health care providers work closely together to plan and implement safe and smooth transitions for chronically or seriously ill patients. Transitions are moves between care settings, for example, hospital to home or rehab facility, or the start or end of home care agency services. Because transitions are often rushed, miscommunication and errors can occur. Next Step in Care materials emphasize careful planning, clear communication, and ongoing care coordination.
VA Caregiver Support
The caregiving site of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, VA Caregiver Support offers resources to veterans and their loved ones, including a toll-free Caregiver Support Line.
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