April 24th, 2024

Veiner Centre caregiver support groups running throughout the month

By Brendan Miller on February 20, 2024.

The Veiner Centre is running support groups for caregivers this month.--FILE PHOTO


Members who are taking care of loved ones, family members or friends living with degenerative nerve diseases will be able to find assistance and connect with other caregivers during a series of support groups at the Veiner Centre.

This week the facility is hosting support sessions for people providing care to others living with Parkinson’s disease, hosted by the Parkinson’s Association of Alberta

Administration says the support session will focus on the importance of self-health while providing for another person living with a long-term condition.

“We take on the responsibility out of love and support and sometimes we forget how absolutely exhausting it can be,” says Cori Fischer, executive director. “And so it’s really important to us here that we are offering support to those caregivers in a variety of different ways.”

The two-hour session will provide caregivers with insights on what they should expect as the disease progresses and some challenges a caregiver might be confronted with.

“The support group is really for the caregivers to talk about the emotional aspect of it,” says Fischer. “And then the practical aspect of caring for someone.”

Fischer say approximately one in four Canadians older than 15 have reported to provide care for family members or friends with long-term conditions and she sees the importance of self-care.

“Many of those are problems are related to aging,” says Fischer. “We also recognize that caregivers have the highest rates of depression or higher rates of depression anyway, and are generally poor in physical health.”

The Parkinson Support group runs from noon to 2 p.m. and you can register by calling 403-317-7710.

As well, the facility has partnered with the Alzheimer’s Society of Alberta to host two support groups throughout the month with an education session on dementia planned later next week.

“They recognize that it’s important to educate as well,” says Fischer. “Because that education can really help in knowing what practical things to do, and by breaking those into two sessions that really gives the caregivers an opportunity to be able to focus where they need to focus.”

Next week the facility is also hosting a support group for men called the “Men’s Shed,” which aims at providing support to male caregivers.

“We know quite often it’s our male caregivers that socially isolate themselves even more than female caregivers,” explains Fischer. “So this will be an opportunity for them to be able to talk about what’s happening for them in a little bit safer of environment.”

“Men’s Shed” runs Feb. 26 from 11 a.m. to noon and registration is required.

“We feel because many of our members are caregivers and they’re already coming down here, so it just makes it a little bit easier to host those support groups.” says Fischer.

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