Recognizing the desire to honor and support family caregivers in our community, Senior Concerns, in concert with our title sponsors Home Helpers Home Care and Adventist Health Simi Valley, presents a Virtual Caregiver Recognition Day on Tuesday, June 15, 1-2:30 p.m. on Zoom. This annual event is designed to give family caregivers the chance to renew their spirit, reduce their stress, and enjoy an uplifting and empowering program. There is no charge to attend, however reservations are required. To reserve your spot, please visit https://www.seniorconcerns.org/caregiver-recognition-day/.
Today, as older adults 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 and Medicaid combined. Those caring for loved ones are often thrust into unexpected roles that can be demanding, costly and stressful. The pandemic compounded that stress for many family caregivers who were suddenly expected to provide care for elderly loved ones without any outside supports, while also possibly juggling working from home and home schooling.
The event encourages family caregivers to practice self-care by offering suggestions, supports and insights by experts. Highlights of the program include segments on “Relaxing with Mindful Meditation,” presented by Marvin G. Belzer, Ph.D., Associate Director of the UCLA Mindful Awareness Research Center; “Increasing Happiness by Living Our Values,” presented by Andrea Gallagher, a Certified Senior Advisor and President of Senior Concerns; and “Creating Health Boundaries for Yourself,” presented by Jenica Polalow, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with 15+ years of experience working in community health care and medical settings, specializing in the emotional wellness of older adults, caregiver burnout, patient-centered care, and navigating life transitions.
A segment titled “Laughter is the Best Medicine” will feature comedian France Dilorinzo. Chef Pascale Beale will present a cooking segment focusing on healthy eating. Chef Pascale is the owner of Pascale’s Kitchen, a Santa Barbara-based culinary on-line boutique, and the author of several cookbooks.
Finally, the event will feature breakout rooms where family caregivers will be guided through real time chats with others also on the caregiving journey.
“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 remain 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 Caregiver Recognition Day will help family caregivers recognize they are not alone and an entire community stands ready to help with the support and resources they need.”
For more information about the Virtual Caregiver Recognition Day or to reserve your spot at the event, please visit https://www.seniorconcerns.org/caregiver-recognition-day/ or contact us at 805-497-0189.