The most common way we help our clients is through one-on-one support, meeting for coffee or talking on the phone. Many caregivers feel uncomfortable in a group, or have no time to spare to attend a support group, and prefer to speak confidentially to one person. Our facilitators can help caregivers with emotional support, navigating the health care system, and finding additional community resources to help them find the energy needed to continue caregiving.
Caregiver Support Groups are an excellent way for caregivers to meet with people who understand the challenges they face and the complicated emotions that go along with caregiving. The content of the meeting is determined by the caregivers with help from the Facilitator. Caregiver Support Groups offer a chance for people in similar situation to connect and share their experiences, feelings, strategies and information about helpful resources. Often caregivers make social connections that extend beyond the groups themselves.
1st and 3rd Tuesdays
2nd and 4th Mondays
2nd Tuesday of the month
4th Thursday of the month
For more information about our support groups, or to participate in a group, contact Janis at 250-815-0835.
Support Circles are a unique model of practice that support senior caregivers and care receivers by establishing, recreating and strengthening both informal and formal social connections. Professional facilitators referred to caregiving families take an extensive inventory of their family members, friends, neighbours and other social connections, as well as any social or health care services they use or that they’ve accessed in the past. The facilitator also supports the caregiving family to assess their needs and identify what assistance would most benefit them.
The facilitator organizes a meeting with the caregiving family and those people who are currently providing support, have provided support in the past, or have the potential to provide support. Agreements are made with supportive people to provide specific assistance to the caregiving family, as identified in the needs assessment.
An important feature of the Support Circle model is that assistance and services are not provided by volunteers, although volunteers may also participate in the circle. Support is primarily offered through genuine connection, in the spirit of community and neighbourliness. For example, a neighbour might agree to provide a pot of soup to the couple every week, while another might agree to purchase grocery items from a list and deliver them when she does her own weekly shopping. A family member might agree to visit with the care receiver on a weekly basis so that the caregiver can leave the house by herself and participate in an activity she enjoys. Formal supports are also explored by the facilitator, including formal health care services
Caregivers need specific information and resources to meet their particular needs. Who provides transportation for seniors in our community? How can a caregiving family access respite or personal care services? What options do they have for day programs or care facilities, when the time comes? Our Facilitators can guide caregivers through the sometimes complex maze of services and resources.
We also provide education about the particular stresses of caregiving, and how to take care of oneself in this role, in addition to other topics in wellness and health.
Many caregivers are too tired to question a “no” from a service agency or the government. We can support caregivers by making phone calls or speaking to professionals on their behalf. In addition to this personal advocacy, we help caregivers raise societal awareness of their issues to make government and services more responsive to their needs in the big picture.
Sometimes, pre-existing issues in a family can further complicate the caregiving relationship. For caregivers with these challenges, CFCSS provides short-term one-on-one counseling sessions with a professional counsellor. Referrals to our counsellor are made through contact with a Facilitator.
CFCSS works closely with the community, including other service organizations, health care services, community groups and local government to enhance the community’s capacity to respond to the needs of all citizens.
CFCSS supports Young Carers as well, youth who are in a caregiving role. Please see our Young Carers website for more information.