If you are a caregiver for a family member you know how important that job can be and you also know how tiring and draining it can be. More and more seniors are relying on family members to provide care as they age and as the number of caregivers grows so does the number of supportive services and resources. You don’t have to feel guilty about taking a break or asking for help because in the long run that will make you a better caregiver for your loved one. Orlando has plenty of options when it comes to caregiver resources and here are just a few you can use.
The North and Central Florida Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association has local and online resources for residents in Orlando. Along with educational and supportive resources, caregivers can use a variety of programs to care for their family member with Alzheimer’s.
Caregiver support groups are offered throughout all of Florida and there are two groups that meet in Orlando. If you can’t make it to a meeting, you can also get support through online groups like the Google Hangout Support Group or ALZ Connected. These meetings allow individuals to share tips, resources, and experience about caring for people with Alzheimer’s.
You can also enroll in Caregiver College which is a series of educational classes that helps you learn and prepare for what it’s like to care for someone with Alzheimer’s. This is a chapter wide program and you can check the calendar to see where the closest location is and what the topic of each class will be.
There is also an entire online page just for caregivers dealing with family members with Alzheimer’s. This page can connect you to local and online resources to help make your caregiving duties a little more manageable.
The Senior Resource Alliance acts as the Area Agency on Aging for Orange County and Orlando. You can find links to different caregiving training and workshops as well as different support groups. You can also learn about things like care managers, cooperating caregiving, and setting limits for yourself in your new role. Call the elder helpline at 1-800-963-5337 for more information.
If you are taking care of a veteran then you can use the programs through the Orlando VA Medical Center to help with your caregiving duties. They offer a wide variety of resources including:
Caregiver support line that can connect you to services and programs or just listen to you when you need it most.
Access to in-home care services and respite programs when you need to take a break from your duties or take care of errands and appointments.
Peer Support Mentoring program that will pair you up with a mentor that has been caregiving for a while and can share their knowledge and experience as well as support.
Home Telehealth which allows you to get access to health resources and education through your phone if you are not located near the VA medical center.
Adult day care services and hospice care if needed.
All you need to do to get access to these programs and services is contact the local Caregiver Coordinator at 407-631-1000.
The Florida Department of Elder Affairs is another good resource for caregivers and can help them find services for the seniors they care for and other programs that can help their caregiving job. They have the locations of local senior centers, information on health insurance and health networks, nutritional programs, assistance with Medicaid, and much more. Call 407-514-0019 for more information.
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