IDAHO — Many people rely on the help of family members as they age or fall ill. In fact, according to the Family Caregiver Alliance, one in four Idahoans is a family caregiver. It's an essential job but not an easy one.
In Treasure Valley, some local organizations offer programs to support those caregivers and help them avoid burnout.
Yvette Saiz Primero is a part of the Family Caregiver Alliance, which has a pilot program called the Family Caregiver Navigator.
Now entering its second year, the program aims to provide support for unpaid caregivers.
“Caregivers, through all of their roles and responsibilities were experiencing a lot of stress and burnout as caregivers. They created this program to help address those needs. Typically, when people are care giving they’re concentrating on the care receiver versus themselves as well," Primero said.
Since the pilot launched last year, the free program has helped more than 200 families, and interest remains strong. Primero said the agency connects with caregivers through referrals and community outreach.
Participants go through a free assessment, then navigators create a plan to fit the caregiver's needs and follow up.
“What we see is people wanting information on the person they are caring for. Then we start talking to them about what their needs might be maybe they’re really stressed out and they need a support group We will find help them find a support group. Sometimes it’s education that they want they may be new to the medical system in general, so they want more education what organization helps with what services," Primero said.
Legacy Corps by Jannus, a nonprofit, is also offering a free 6 part workshop series for all family caregivers. The classes will focus on helping caregivers identify and manage stress.
For information on the classes you call (208) 947-4283 email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Primero hopes the pilot program will continue next year.
“When we create the plans, we let them guide us. It’s person-centered if they decide that something is important to them then that’s what we’re going to focus on. We do help them guide on self-care component its shown once caregivers start to experience that stress and heavy burdens then caregiving capabilities fall," she said.