Sandpoint Area Seniors recently was awarded at $5,000 respite care grant from the Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, a national non-profit organization that unites more than 2,600 member organizations nationwide with the goal of providing optimal care and services to individuals living with dementia and their families.
Grant recipients utilize these funds to provide respite scholarships to families living with Alzheimer’s disease.
Respite programs — such as adult day programs like that offered by SASi — offer caregivers a much-needed time-out from their caregiving duties, while providing stimulation for individuals with Alzheimer’s.
“AFA is proud to award respite care grants in an effort to help family caregivers maintain their own sense of mental and physical health. Nobody is superman. It is important to realize that you can’t do it all,” said Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., president and chief executive officer of AFA.
“These grants will afford family caregivers an opportunity to send a loved one with dementia to an adult day program, or hire an in-home aid, and lightens their caregiving load, allowing them the critical time necessary to recharge. Respite care ultimately helps people remain in their homes longer and delays the need for a long-term care facility. I congratulate all the grant recipients and encourage them to keep up the great work,” added Mr. Fuschillo.
Family caregivers of individuals with dementia are critical to the quality of life of the care recipients. However, this support often comes at a cost of caregiver distress and with a challenging quality of life.
Caregivers face many obstacles as they balance caregiving with other demands, including child rearing, career, and relationships. They are at increased risk for stress, depression, and a variety of other health complications, as well as decreased engagement in preventive health behaviors, such as exercise. There is also a greater likelihood among caregivers of smoking, drinking alcohol, and inadequate sleep.
The grant is named for the deceased parents of Barry Berg, the AFA board’s treasurer. Both of Berg’s parents passed away in 2009. His mother, Phyllis, had Alzheimer’s disease, and his father, Milton, was a devoted caregiver.
AFA is able to provide this critical support as a result of the generosity of individual contributions, grants, sponsorships and AFA fundraising activities. To help support these initiatives, please visit www.alzfdn.org/donate.
The Alzheimer’s Foundation of America, based in New York, is a non-profit organization that unites more than 2,600 member organizations nationwide with the goal of ensuring optimal care, and providing the necessary support services, as well as guidance on resources to those living with dementia, and to their families. Its services include a national, toll-free helpline (866-232-8484) staffed by licensed social workers, educational conferences and materials, a free quarterly magazine for caregivers, the National Memory Screening Program, and “AFA Partners in Care” dementia care training for healthcare professionals. For more information about AFA, call 866-232-8484, visit www.alzfdn.org, follow us on Twitter, or connect with us on Facebook or LinkedIn.