Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Show You Care: November is National Family Caregivers Month

“There are only four kinds of people in the world — those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers and those who will need caregivers.”
— Former First Lady, Rosalynn Carter

National Family Caregivers Month is a nationally recognized month seeking to draw attention to the many challenges facing family caregivers, advocate for stronger public policy to address family caregiving issues, and raise awareness about community programs that support family caregivers.

Sixty-five million caregivers (29% of the U.S. population) are recognized during National Family Caregivers Month. The estimated value of the services provided by these family members caring for loved ones who are frail, disabled, or chronically ill is estimated to be more than $300 billion annually.

National Family Caregivers Month was developed in 1994 as a week-long event inaugurated by the National Family Caregiver Association.  President Clinton signed the first Presidential Proclamation in 1997, and each successive president has followed suit. In this year’s proclamation, President Obama writes: “Family caregivers have an immeasurable impact on the lives of those they assist, but their hours are long and their work is hard.”

Caregiving can be rewarding, but it can also physically and emotionally demanding. The Law Firm of Evan H. Farr advises that if you are a caregiver, don’t let your own needs or your health take a back seat.  Many caregivers are at the age when they are developing their own chronic issues. Be sure to take good care of the person you are caring for ­and yourself too!

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