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Thursday, November 20, 2014

Catholic Charities offers valuable support through Caregiver Assistance Network

Caregiver network logo

For many family members, there comes a time when they must become the primary caretaker of an aging parent or spouse. This life-course change may be minor or become all-consuming. These caregivers need somewhere to turn. Since 1996, the Caregiver Assistance Network, a service of Catholic Charities of Southwestern Ohio, has been there to help.

The Network provides a wide-range of services to caregivers, through which they can learn how to take care of their family member and gain valuable resource information to help care for their loved ones. Caregivers can also learn how to take care of themselves – emotionally and physically. Just as importantly, caregivers can learn how to maintain a loving relationship with their family member. In 2013, the Caregiver Assistance Network helped more than 1,100 area caregivers.

The Network’s services include:

  • Support Groups: Each month, more than 340 caregivers meet through 27 support groups throughout southwest Ohio. Here they receive support, encouragement, inspiration and information from other caregivers in their community.
  • Workshops: Each month, the Network offers two to three workshops on topics important to caregivers, usually at no charge. Examples of topics include Aging with Grace, Support through the Holidays, Legal and Financial Advice, and more. 
  • Podcast Videos: Those looking for advice and information on caregiver-related issues from local and national experts can instantly access informational videos through the Network’s Podcast Video Library. There are dozens of topics ranging from medical advice, to safety, to available resources for caregivers to support and encouragement and many more. 
  • CAREline: a toll-free hotline providing resource information, referrals and support. Call (513) 929-4483.
  • Caregiver Newsletter: BALANCE is a newsletter published regularly by the Network which provides articles and resources of interest to family caregivers and caregiver professionals. 

In addition to the Caregiver Assistance Network, caregivers might be interested in other services available to seniors through Catholic Charities of Southwestern Ohio, including:

  • Foster Grandparents, which places seniors into schools and other organizations throughout Hamilton County to mentor disadvantaged youth.
  • Senior Companions, which pairs senior volunteers with other seniors who need socialization, assistance with daily activities and transportation.
  • The RSVP Program, which offers volunteer opportunities for those 55 and older with non-profit organizations throughout Hamilton County, as well as other Catholic Charities programs.
  • Mental Health Services, which provides mental health counseling (including in-home therapy) to seniors who often suffer from mental health issues unique to the aging process.

To learn more about the caregiver services provided by Catholic Charities and the Caregiver Assistance Network, visit http://ccswoh.org/services/seniors/caregivers or email caringmatters@ccswoh.org.

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