On Saturday, January 30, 2016, Senior Concerns, The Greater Conejo Valley Chamber of Commerce, and the Cities of Agoura Hills, Westlake Village and Thousand Oaks will host Caregivers Matter…Conejo Cares , a half-day program and luncheon honoring family caregivers who are caring for aging loved ones. Caregivers Matter…Conejo Cares will take place from 9:30-1:30 p.m. at Los Robles Greens, 209 Moorpark Road in Thousand Oaks. Admission is free. Reservations are required and may be made by visiting www.seniorconcerns.org or calling 805-497-0189. No walk-ins will be allowed.

Today, as our elders are living longer with more complex health conditions, family caregiving is increasing in numbers and challenges. Nationally, about 66 million people report being a caregiver for someone over age 50. Family caregivers provide 80% of the long-term care services in the United States today, valued at $577 billion or more than the total cost of Medicare. Those caring for loved ones are often thrust into unexpected roles that can be demanding, costly and stressful.

Recognizing the need to honor and celebrate family caregivers, the half-day event will provide caregivers the opportunity to share their story, renew their spirit, relieve their stress and enjoy an uplifting and empowering program. Among highlights will be a 20-minute Blissful Movement Chair Yoga session, a panel of physicians who will discuss how they identify and care for family caregivers in their practice, a keynote address on focusing on the positive by Shola, founder of The Positivity Solution and a corporate trainer and writer who is committed to changing the world by helping as many people as possible to live and work more positively. Nationally-known comedienne and caregiver Monica Piper will join us again this year to help us Find the Funny in Caregiving. Attendees will also have the opportunity to add their loved one’s picture to the Community Care Circle and participate in a non-denominational healing power of gratitude activity led by Pastor Brad Johnson of California Community Church.

“Family caregivers play a vital role in caring for our large and growing senior population and are instrumental in keeping elders out of institutions and in the community. Yet, caregiving often takes a tremendous physical and emotional toll, leading to health issues, such as depression, and financial concerns,” says Andrea Gallagher, CSA, President of Senior Concerns. “We hope Caregivers Matter…Conejo Cares will help family caregivers recognize they are not alone and an entire community stands ready to help with the support and resources they need.”

Part of the program will be dedicated to recognizing those businesses in the community that are demonstrating leadership by accommodating and recognizing caregivers. Pepperdine University was recognized last year with Conejo Cares Caregiver-Friendly Workplace Award. To nominate a local business this year, please visit www.seniorconcerns.org .

Sponsorship opportunities are available. To learn more about sponsorship, please contact Carole Kornreich at carole@seniorconcerns.org or 805-497-0189.

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