During the month of May, the military world takes a moment to honor the millions of caregivers that provide care for the veterans of our country.
Caregivers are usually family members and loved ones of veterans living with the effects of war, disability, chronic illness or aging. Their care and sacrifice help veterans remain at home and play an important role in the quality of life for the veteran. Caregivers have other important roles as well such as working and caring for children or elderly parents. Their tasks can also include navigating complicated service systems, calling doctors, advocating for the care receiver and taking care of the day-to-day needs of the veteran and family members that rely on them. Often lacking any kind of training ahead of time, most caregivers “learn on the fly” to meet the broad range of tasks that they are asked to do.
It’s easy to become overwhelmed as a caregiver. It’s one thing to gear up for a short-term crisis, but it takes different skills and dedication to provide care over a longer period of time. Caregivers, who are providing so much essential support to our veterans, need support themselves so that they don’t burn out from exhaustion and deal the challenge of feeling alone. Support groups and resources can connect the caregiver to various networks and people who can offer help, understand what they are going through and what a new caregiver can expect.
Project Sanctuary’s Family Support team provides programs and assistance for all caregivers, and military families, who need it through the generous support of our amazing donors. In a new Caregiver Support Group, recent discussions have focused on dealing with family changes and stressors due to the Coronavirus but ongoing support to deal with stress, family conflict, PTS triggers in the family, finding resources and support and family finances, among other relevant topics, are always available.
For more information about Project Sanctuary’s Family Support assistance, email [email protected].
Other helpful resources include https://nami.org/Support-Education/Mental-Health-Education/NAMI-Homefront and https://www.powerfultoolsforcaregivers.org.