Women’s Work is Never Done: Community Health Charities Urges Women Caregivers to Take Care of their Health at Home and in the Workplace
Washington, D.C., October 29, 2015 /3BL Media/ – Community Health Charities continues its focus on women’s health this month by emphasizing the role of women as caregivers and the many resources available to them through its network of member charities that can help manage their responsibilities, take care of their own health and lessen the impact at work.
For decades, women have fulfilled the role of primary caregiver to children, spouses, parents, friends and even neighbors. This is especially true when their loved one has a chronic disease or disability. The difference today is that many women are also a primary wage earner for their families, juggling the dual responsibilities of working and caregiving.
“About 66 percent of women are caregivers. Each one of them has a unique story, whether helping a spouse combat the ravages of cancer, coping with the challenges of raising a child with autism or caring for a parent slowly losing their battle with Alzheimer’s,” said Thomas G. Bognanno, president & CEO of Community Health Charities. “Caregiving can have serious economic consequences, while taking a toll on personal health. Many women are losing wages due to reduced work hours, family leave or early retirement. Higher levels of physical and mental health challenges are also more common among women caregivers. This is where Community Health Charities can help.”
Many organizations in Community Health Charities’ nationwide network of nearly 2,000 health charities provide the resources, counseling and support women need to help relieve some of the stress on themselves and their loved ones in order to live healthier lives.
Available resources include:
ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis)
- The ALS Association understands the emotional toll that caring for someone with ALS takes on one’s life and health. Visit their website for caregiver information and resources, including:
Alzheimer’s and Dementia
- Whether you need information for early-stage, middle-stage or late-stage caregiving, the Alzheimer's Association has resources that can help you live a better life.
- The Arthritis Foundation offers a variety of resources for children and adults, including:
- Being a caregiver for someone with autism, while a fulfilling role, also consumes a great deal of physical, mental and emotional energy. Respite care is very important as it gives the caregiver opportunities to care for themselves – something the caregiver often overlooks – and to take a much-needed break from daily caregiving. Autism Speaks offers these resources to learn more about respite services, how to get them and how to find a respite worker that meets your family's needs.
- Toolkits from Autism Speaks can help newly-diagnosed families of children ages 4 and under and families of children between the ages of 5 and 13. They also provide tips for behavioral health treatments, advocacy skills and more.
- The American Cancer Society helps friends and family members know what to expect when becoming a caregiver for a person with cancer and provides tips to ensure they take care of themselves as well.
- The many responsibilities of being a caregiver often lead to job conflicts. These tips from the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society can help balance both roles more effectively.
- City of Hope has created a Caregiver’s Guide to help patients and their loved ones cope with the array of feelings that can arise with cancer diagnosis and treatment, from personal needs to getting on with life.
- A caregiver who has helped a loved one live with pancreatic cancer understands how cancer changes lives. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network can help ease the final phase of an individual’s pancreatic cancer journey.
- A diabetes diagnosis can be overwhelming as a caregiver. The American Diabetes Association’s eight tips for caregivers can help you and your loved one enjoy the healthiest lives possible.
- Do you have a child living with diabetes, but are nervous to leave him or her alone with a babysitter? The American Diabetes Association’s basics of diabetes care, which includes what to do in an emergency, can help ease your fears.
- It can be challenging when a child receives a type 1 diabetes diagnosis. Discover helpful information and support through the JDRF Bag of Hope.
On the Job
- There are obvious benefits to working, like income and health insurance, but it can also take a physical and emotional toll on caregivers. The National Hospice & Palliative Care Organization lists several work options that can minimize your stress.
- What should you do when an important personal situation and the need for a paycheck collide? CaringBridge offers advice.
- If you are concerned about taking time off for doctor visits and other caregiving duties, the Family Medical Leave Act can protect you.
- Caregiving for someone living with Parkinson’s disease often becomes more challenging as the disease progresses. The National Parkinson Foundation has resources available for all stages of caregiving, caregiver fatigue and more.
- The American Parkinson Disease Association’s (APDA) Keys to Caregiving offers strategies for caring for a person with Parkinson’s disease, as well as identifying and accessing useful resources.
- APDA’s Lotsa Helping Hands helps restore health and balance to caregivers’ lives by bringing together caregivers and volunteers through online communities that organize daily life during times of medical crisis or caregiver exhaustion.
- Stroke often comes unexpectedly, making the role of caregiver even more challenging for some. Caregivers play an important role throughout the post-stroke recovery process, starting on day one. The National Stroke Association offers information about assistance and support for post-stroke caregiving.
- For stroke caregivers, taking care of yourself is just as important. Visit the American Stroke Association for information and resources to help you take care of yourself and make your life easier.
For more information, or to learn how your company can bring these resources to your employees, please visit www.healthcharities.org or call 1-800-654-0845.
About Community Health Charities
Community Health Charities improves the lives of people affected by a chronic disease or disability by uniting caring donors in the workplace with the nation’s most trusted health charities. Over the past five years, Community Health Charities has raised more than $400 million to support the missions of the nearly 2,000 charities in our network. For more information about Community Health Charities, visit www.healthcharities.org or call 1-800-654-0845.