Throughout the United States, millions of Americans raise children, care for aging parents and work full time. With November being National Family Caregivers Month, now’s a great time to recognize the importance of preventing caregiver burnout.
More than 4 million people in New York provide crucial care for a loved one, and many of them have limited support. This can often lead to burnout and social isolation. The state’s new caregiver training program aims to change that with a free web-based support platform. It offers caregiver skills training classes for people caring for family members with special needs including intellectual and developmental disabilities, mental illness and dementia.
The classes are offered by Trualta, a web-based caregiver education platform, as part of a partnership with the state’s Office for the Aging (NYSOFA) and Association on Aging in New York. They’re designed for caregivers including parents of children with special needs and those caring for aging adults.
Help for Caregivers in NYS: Accessing the Service
New Yorkers can access the service at https://newyork-caregivers.com. Once registered, caregivers can select personalized training and track their progress on variety of topics, including:
- Caregiver wellness
- Balancing work and caregiving
- Creating a routine for kids
- Safety tips when caring
- Reducing social isolation in loved ones with developmental disabilities
- Communication changes
- Medication management
- Dementia care
- Home safety
- Documents and decision making
- Support for mental illness
Users can log-in from any computer, tablet or smartphone.
According to NYSOFA, caregivers in New York State provide 2.68 billion hours of unpaid care. Sixty-one percent worry about caring for a loved one. Seventy percent reported at least one mental health symptom during the pandemic. The online program is designed to teach critical skills and offer help for caregivers to reduce stress levels and increase confidence in one’s caregiving abilities.
“Family, friends and neighbors provide a range of unpaid support for loved ones at home, including often complex or intensive tasks for family members who have chronic conditions like dementia or diabetes,” Greg Olsen, director of NYSOFA, said. “This labor of love can be all-consuming, but you are not alone. Our partnership with Trualta offers an evidence-based support platform statewide, empowering unpaid caregivers with the knowledge and skills training necessary to reduce anxiety and stress while improving outcomes in the care of loved ones. Equally important is the connection it provides to local programs and services for help if needed.”For more information about the service, visit the NYSOFA online or follow the agency on Facebook.
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