for Immediate Release
of Aging Marks November as Caregiver Support Month
– Secretary of Aging Brian Duke encourages all Pennsylvanians to recognize
November as National Family Caregiver Month. The designation honors the efforts
of caregivers in the commonwealth.
A family caregiver is someone who
provides any type of unpaid help or care to a loved one who is ill or has a
disability. Whether it is physical, emotional or functional, a caregiver
enables a person to remain in their home and community.
“Family and informal caregivers such as
friends and neighbors are an invaluable source of support and service,” Duke
said. “We ask Pennsylvanians to take time this month to acknowledge and thank
these caregivers for all they do. We also encourage family caregivers to reach
out for information and support to improve caregiving skills and discover new
tools and resources.”
Pennsylvania has more than 1.3 million informal
caregivers. These individuals provide an estimated 1.4 billion hours of unpaid
help or care every year. As the older population increases, more adults will
assume the role of caregiver.
The Department of Aging provides
assistance to caregivers through the Pennsylvania Caregiver Support Program. The
program provides information and training in caregiving skills. It helped more
than 7,000 caregivers during the last fiscal year.
For those eligible, the Pennsylvania
Caregiver Support Program also offers reimbursement for the cost of respite
care and assistance with home modifications and some out of pocket expenses.
Caregivers are encouraged to access
resources, including a taped series of caregiver information sessions on the
department’s website. Additional information and an application for the Pennsylvania
Caregiver Program are available through local Area Agencies on Aging.
For more information about the
Pennsylvania Caregiver Support Program and the taped caregiving series, please
call 1-800-753-8827 or visit www.aging.state.pa.us.
contact: Christina Reese, 717-783-1550
note: The text of the Governor’s
Proclamation for Caregiver Support Month in Pennsylvania follows:
WHEREAS, both family
members and professional caregivers are the wellspring of Pennsylvania’s support
to older adults with chronic conditions, frailty or disabilities, and as such
sustain those who desire to remain independent in their own homes; and
WHEREAS, the Older
Americans Act calls for the establishment of both informal and professional provider
support services to help elderly citizens remain a vital part of the community;
caregivers, either attending to the client via providers, or through the devotion
of spouses, relatives, partners and friends offer a wide range of assistance to
prevent or delay placement in institutional settings; and
Pennsylvania’s Caregiver Support Program provides support through counseling
and assessment of caregiver needs, financial assistance and training and
referrals that may provide assistance; and
Pennsylvania’s 1,370,000 caregivers help older adults and those with disabilities
to age and live well, thus constituting a profound resource to our Commonwealth;
WHEREAS, every day
caregivers demonstrate extraordinary vigilance, dedication, patience and love in
helping individuals and families; thereby assisting with personal care, overseeing
medications, nutritional sustenance, advocacy during medical appointments or
hospital stays, from physical help with household chores to providing emotional
caregivers who provide respite care to families of older adults with special
needs and memory loss; reducing stress and mitigating the risk of abuse and
neglect by providing such help, is a highly valuable service that cannot be
WHEREAS, the month
of November by tradition is a time to reflect upon, recognize, and celebrate the
important contributions of others, the impact of caregivers’ service and the
many powerful ways their skill and service binds together our common humanity.
THEREFORE, I, Tom
Corbett, Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, do hereby proclaim November
2013 as CAREGIVER SUPPORT MONTH in Pennsylvania. I encourage all citizens to
recognize the important role all caregivers play in the lives of older
GIVEN under my
hand and the Seal of the Governor, at the City of Harrisburg, on this
seventeenth day of October in the year of our Lord two thousand and thirteen,
and of the Commonwealth the two hundred and thirty-eighth.