Many caregivers are overwhelmed in their role – unsure of where to get information and anxious about what the future holds. They’re frustrated, worried and many find it difficult to cope.
Caregiving impacts the caregiver’s health and wellness, employment, finances and personal relationships. And, they often find it hard to ask for help. How you interact with caregivers in your role makes a meaningful difference in the caregiving experience.
Supporting caregivers begins with including them in the conversation. Read about seven meaningful ways that you can support caregivers.
Time to talk Toolkit Co-designed by providers and caregivers, the Time to Talk toolkit aims to help organizations facilitate greater awareness of caregivers and their roles and the value they bring to being on the care team, and encourage meaningful conversations. The Toolkit provides seven easy things providers can do to make a difference to the caregiver experience. These tips, designed by caregivers, support focused conversations. The toolkit includes adaptable resources to help organizations with implementation, build staff/providers as champions, and sustain change.
The caregiving experience can be made easier when they are connected to programs and services that support their needs as an individual.
Ontario Caregiver Organization – Programs & Services for Caregivers:
The Ontario Caregiver Organization offers a variety of programs and supports for caregivers, so that they can be supported in their role.
ONTARIO CAREGIVER HELPLINE: 1-833-416-2273
Single point of access to information, support and service in English and French 24/7. Live chat is available 7am-9pm (Mon – Fri) at ontariocaregiver.ca. Caregivers can speak to a Community Resource Specialist to connect to community-based services and supports across Ontario based on their individual needs.
SCALE PROGRAM: CAREGIVER NEEDS AND WELL-BEING
Eight weekly webinars, online group coaching and one-on-one telephone counselling. SCALE (Supporting Caregiver Awareness, Learning and Empowerment) focused on topics relevant to new or experienced caregivers, including caregiver stress, managing feelings of anxiety or guilt, self-care for the caregiver. Registration is required.
VIRTUAL PEER SUPPORT GROUPS
An opportunity for caregivers to connect with other caregivers to discuss the challenges they are facing. Support groups are offered several times a week including a group for young caregivers. Option to join online or by phone:
1:1 PEER MENTORING PROGRAM
Peer support program that connects caregivers with trained peer mentors for 1:1 phone or virtual support. Caregivers with lived experience and knowledge to share are trained to become peer mentors to provide support to another caregiver seeking support with the challenges they are facing.
One-hour webinars offered two times per month on a wide range of topics for caregivers. Recordings of past webinars are also available online on our Vimeo library.
TOOLKITS AND RESOURCES FOR CAREGIVERS ON OUR WEBSITE
Our website offers a wide range of tools and resources for caregivers at ontariocaregiver.ca, including:
- I am a Caregiver Starter Toolkit – Created by caregivers for caregivers the toolkit focuses on how the caregiver can be empowered to take care of themselves.
- Work & Caregiving – A Balancing Act: Toolkit for Working Caregivers
- COVID-19 Caregiver Tip Sheets, including a COVID-19 Contingency Plan tool for caregivers