Reaching out for help is not selfish. We’ll say it again because sometimes all the amazing caregivers out there need to be reminded. Reaching out for help is not selfish. If you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t take care of anyone else.

Being a caregiver is hard. The role comes with a lot of work and a lot of tough decisions. (And then there’s the added stress of doing all of this during the midst of a pandemic.) You lovingly cook meals, sort medication, give baths, clean houses, attend doctors’ appointments, and so much more…which is why an entire month has been designated to recognize this incredibly difficult job that you’ve taken on.

First established in 1997 by President Clinton to raise awareness about the toll that caregiving can take on family members, 2021 marks the 24th year of National Family Caregivers Month. According to the National Alliance for Caregiving, an estimated 65.7 million Americans serve as family caregivers for an ill or disabled relative.

At St. John’s Community Care, we join the entire country in honoring you and all that you do to care for your loved ones. We’re here to support you on this journey, a journey that you shouldn’t have to take alone. Keep reading for an overview of the caregiver resources we offer.

Family Caregivers Support Group & Alzheimer’s Support Group

Finding support from others who understand exactly what you’re going through can be invaluable. We offer two different support groups, both currently held online and free of charge.

Our first group is geared toward family caregivers who are caring for loved ones with any type of disability and is facilitated by the Director of our Adult Day Program. The sessions are offered at 6 pm on the 2nd Wednesday of every month, and siblings or other family members are welcome to attend. You will hear first-hand from others who have been where you are and can offer advice, support, or just a listening ear. If you would like to join the Zoom group meeting online please email srhodes@stjohnscc.org.

Our other group is designed specifically for family caregivers with loved ones suffering from dementia and memory loss. You will meet with compassionate and experienced leaders who have been specially trained in the issues of dementia and aging. Join other caregivers who are facing these same difficulties for fellowship and support. This group session is held online on the 2nd Tuesday of each month from 1:30 – 3:00 pm. If you are interested, please email Gail at gshaw@stjohnscc.org for instructions and an invitation to join the meeting.

Savvy Caregiver

Caring for a family member with dementia or Alzheimer’s is a tough job. At St. John’s Community Care, we’ve developed Savvy Caregiver, a program with strategies that help make your days with your loved ones more meaningful for you both.

This free six-session training course equips you with special coping skills, knowledge, strategies, and techniques that will empower you with confidence as a caregiver. Designed specifically for family and friends who are actively caring for those living with Alzheimer’s or related dementias, it will help you understand the impact of dementia on both you and the person in your care. You’ll learn to take control and set goals, communicate more effectively, strengthen your own family resources, and so much more.

If you’re interested in joining our next available session, contact us today.

Stress Busting Program

As rewarding as being a family caregiver can be, it can also put you at risk for stress related symptoms like depression and anxiety. Figuring out ways to manage your stress is crucial in making sure you are at your best to be able to care for both yourself and your loved one.

Our Stress Busting Program is free of charge and includes nine weekly sessions that teach you how to cope with the challenges that come with being a family caregiver. If you’re interested in joining our next available session, please reach out. Call 618-344-5008 to register or for more information.

Coffee Talk with Caregivers

Coffee Talk is an informational group designed specifically to help relieve the caregiver burden, improve family relationships, and boost confidence in your caregiving abilities. Join other caregivers and specialized experts to discuss a variety of topics around dementia and memory loss issues. You’ll talk about issues like stress management, self-care, identifying triggers, problem solving, managing behaviors, and more.

If you are interested in participating in Coffee Talk with Caregivers, please email Stacey Rhodes at srhodes@stjohnscc.org or call 618-344-5008.

Free Caregiver Consult

Caregiving can often be a bit of a puzzle. Trying to put it together in a way that makes sense for you and your loved one isn’t easy, especially if you don’t have all the pieces. St. John’s Community Care is here to support you in any way we can. We offer a free one-hour care consultation to help you find the area resources you need. Call 618-344-5008 to set up your consultation today.