5 Ways to Show Your Support During National Family Caregivers Month
November marks National Family Caregivers Month, a month dedicated to honoring and supporting the caregivers in your family’s life. Caregivers dedicate their time to helping others and as anyone who relies on the support of a family caregiver knows, this altruistic attitude doesn’t go unnoticed.
According to AARP, there are approximately 40 million unpaid family caregivers in the United States, and this number is on the rise. Let’s look at some ways to go the extra mile in November to celebrate these important individuals.
Give Your Caregiver Something Special
Everyone deserves to be recognized for their hard work, and caregivers are no exception! Take National Family Caregivers Month as an opportunity to treat your caregiver to something special. Maybe they would love a massage to relax after a busy week, a box of their favorite chocolates, or a card that shows your thanks. It doesn’t have to be anything huge, but just a token of your gratitude to show that you’re thinking of them and their hard work.
Ask How You Can Help
Caregivers are nurturers by nature, so they might be hesitant to accept help from others. That being said, though, even helpers need help! Take the time to ask your caregiver what you can do to make their lives a little easier. It might be as small as cooking dinner once a week or running some errands for the family, but it’s these little ways to help that make all the difference.
Encourage Some “Me” Time
Your family caregiver may spend their day taking care of others, but when was the last time they took care of themselves? Encourage some much needed “me” time during National Family Caregivers Month by organizing a day (or even just a few hours) that your caregiver can take to relax.
You could schedule time to take care of your family member while your caregiver sleeps in a little, grabs a cup of coffee and lounges in their favorite coffee shop, or spends the morning with their kids! This little break will do wonders for your caregiver’s well-being and show that you appreciate all the work they put in.
Open the Network of Support
As much as you may do to support your family member, they would probably benefit from the support of other caregivers. The Care Community through Caregiver Action Network is a great forum where caregivers can ask questions, encourage each other, and seek support. Here, your family member can find general discussions, specific threads, and more.
Bring in Other Resources
You and your family caregiver both know that they can’t do it all! Luckily, there are a number of public and private organizations ready to help take some things off their plate. For example, Meals on Wheels delivers fresh, warm meals to seniors right to their door. Your community might also have transportation resources, health care support, and more. In honor of National Family Caregivers Month, do some research on these avenues because they might be just the support your family needs.
As anyone who is familiar with family caregivers knows, these individuals deserve recognition and support throughout the year. But in November, take the time to go that extra step and use National Family Caregivers Month as a chance to support and celebrate the caregivers in your life.