Do you know someone who could use some help, but you’re not sure where to start? Perhaps you’ve seen the toll caregiving is taking on a friend or family member – the tired eyes from too many sleepless nights, the worried brow from trying to coordinate a litany of doctor appointments, the fear of what comes next. Even though you don’t have all of the answers, or the ability to change the situation, there are a few things you can do to help.
Watching someone we care about experience a challenging situation, such as caregiving, can leave us feeling anxious and powerless. Even though you don’t have all of the answers, or the ability to change the situation, there are a few things you can do to help.
Listen – provide caregivers with a non-judgmental ear
Offer assistance with specific tasks – It is our inclination to say “let me know what I can do to help.” But offering to help with specific things may increase the likeliness that the caregiver will accept help. Perhaps you can:
Sit with their loved one for a couple of hours so that the caregiver can have a break
- Cook a meal
- Mow the lawn
- Run errands
- Help with research on support programs, diagnosis specific information, etc.
Acknowledgement – something as simple as acknowledging the challenges that the caregiver faces can boost their spirits. Ask the caregiver how they are doing. They may be asked often how their loved one is doing, but many caregivers feel invisible. Let them know that they are seen.
Be an Advocate for caregivers.
I Want to Be Listed As a Respite Provider
When you’re providing respite, you’re providing a lifeline to a family caregiver. Whether you work with an agency, or provide respite on your own, your services are needed!
Listings in the Idaho 2-1-1 Respite provider directory are reserved for non-profit, governmental organizations, or those who offer free or reduced services. To learn more about the requirements and application process, visit: http://www.211.idaho.gov/addresource.html
Can I get paid to take care of my loved one?
The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare’s Certified Family Home Program may be a viable option for those meeting the established criteria. The program requires certification and ongoing training and the person receiving care must qualify for Medicaid. To determine if this is a good fit for your family, contact the Department of Health and Welfare at (208) 239-6263 877-456-1233 or visit the Certified Family Home Program’s website.
Another method is to become employed by an in-home healthcare provider/home health agency near where your loved one lives and become assigned to your loved one as a client of the agency. Your loved one can pay the agency fees and you would be paid as an employee. This also may be an option if your loved one qualifies for financial assistance through the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (IDHW). To determine if your loved one qualifies, apply at your local IDHW office. If your loved one qualifies for assistance they may be eligible for an array of services. Visit their website here.