Caring for an older adult family member or
friend can be a daunting task. So many
times, the caregiver can exhaust themselves.
You do not have to go it alone.
AgeSmart can help with services and resources to help you make this very
important role of a caregiver easier.
Caregiver Resource Specialist
AgeSmart’s Caregiver Resource Specialists can link you to services to
help you meet the needs of the person you are caring for. Each and every situation is different, and
they can help you customize a plan for the person you are caring for. Using a comprehensive resource data base,
they can give you guidance and options for your loved one’s care.
National ElderCare Locator
The National ElderCare Locator is also available for you if you are
caring an individual in another state. Access
the ElderCare locator at https://eldercare.acl.gov/Public/Index.aspx or call 1-800-677-1116. You can
find the local Area Agency on Aging in that person’s community.
Sometimes a simple break from your caregiving role can help you, the
caregiver, get a needed break. AgeSmart
offers a Respite program which pays the caregiver a monthly stipend that they
can use to purchase care allowing them to get out of the house.
Short-term counseling is available for St. Clair, Madison and Bond
County residents, related to topics of aging, illness, grief, life events,
caregiving and community resources. The
counselors are available by appointment for in the home of homebound
If you are caring for someone with
Alzheimer’s Disease Savvy Caregiver teaches the basic knowledge, skills, and
attitudes needed to handle the challenges of caring for someone with the
disease. Savvy Caregiver training
program will help you reduce your distress effectively so you can focus on the
task of being a caregiver.
Stress Busting for Caregivers
The Impact of stress on your
health and its relationship to your caregiving is significant. Stress busting helps you deal with stress
through relaxation techniques and problem solving. It also teaches you how to care for yourself
while providing better care for your loved one. Participants in the program are
given everything needed including a session handbook and online access to a
meditation exercise and relaxation strategy videos. Caregivers who have
completed this program feel significantly lower stress, depression, and anxiety
and are able to enjoy a better quality of life. They have also experienced
improvement in their ability to relax, manage stress and feel better about
If you are living with a person
with dementia is sometimes difficult to get out and do simple things with your
loved one like going to dinner. You may
be concerned about your loved one’s behavior or abilities and therefore just
stay home. Cafés provide a comfortable
environment where can meet with other caregivers and their loved ones and
participate in activities.
Having your legal documents in
order is very important. AgeSmart
provides funding to Land of Lincoln Legal Assistance Foundation to assist with
legal issues caregivers face.
Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
In Illinois, more than 200,000
children are being raised in grandparent-headed homes. If you are one of these grandparents help is
available for you. Assistance can range
from financial assistance, guardianship, legal and Information and assistance.
Advice from caregivers to caregivers:
- Ask for help. Do not try to do it all yourself.
- Never make promises you can’t keep.
- Trust your instincts, most of the time they will lead you in the right direction.
- Educate yourself on your loved one’s condition. This will help you communicate with doctors.
Services provided by AgeSmart are
available to everyone 60 and older for only a suggested contribution. For more information call AgeSmart at