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Celebrating Caregivers this November

November 8, 2021

From the Office for Social Ministry

November is National Family Caregivers Month, a time to recognize all those who dedicate their time and energy to caring for loved ones with special needs across the country. According to Mental Health America (MHA), more than 53 million Americans are unpaid caregivers to family, friends, and neighbors. About one-third of them are caring for someone with a mental illness. This makes it even more important for caregivers to stay on top of their own physical, mental, and emotional health by staying informed about available opportunities for community support.

One valuable national resource is the Caregiver Action Network (CAN). CAN is a non-profit organization that provides education, peer support and resources to family caregivers, including a comprehensive TOOL BOX that covers topics ranging from medication management to nutritional counseling.

Many caregivers often forget about their own needs and sometimes experience burnout when overwhelmed with responding to all the needs of their loved one. The 10 Tips for Family Caregivers focuses on self-care and willingness to accept support from others.

Catholic Charities Hawaii is another resource that offers the REACH Community caregiver training program, which provides free training sessions for those caring for loved ones living with dementia, or Alzheimer’s disease. An official diagnosis is not required. For more information and eligibility screening, contact the CCH Senior Services Intake line at (808) 527-4777.  

When commenting on Family Life, Pope Francis says, “there is no aspect of family life excluded from the healing and strengthening touch of God’s love, communicated through the Gospels and taught by the Church.” May all our parish communities lift up in prayer the caregivers in our pews and those caring for their loved ones at home.