From the Desk of CEO Judy Halper: July 2019
The need for JFCS’ caregiving coaching services continues to grow
Babysitting my 1-year old granddaughter this past weekend was unadulterated fun and pure joy! No messy face while feeding herself, changing “dirty” diapers, or being constantly on-the-go while chasing this budding walker could alter that perspective! I’ve heard it said that grandchildren are life’s dividends, and I can only say that as the grandparent of three (two toddlers and a baby), it is absolutely true!
While providing this temporary caregiving to my granddaughter, I couldn’t help but make an interesting observation – she was content for a very long time playing a game over and over again, repeating the activity with little to no deviation. Emptying out the drawer with all of its contents and then putting them back was better than any Baby Einstein toy in the house! My job was to supervise the activity more than anything else, to ensure that the she didn’t topple into the drawer or otherwise jeopardize her safety.
This behavior is similar for those of us who also provide caregiving to older adults with memory loss, dementia, or experience other effects of aging that cause them to engage in certain behaviors over and over again. Caregiving requires patience and attention to safety, whether it’s engaging with little ones, or those far along in aging.
Requests for family coaching and caregiving for older parents is increasing at Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Minneapolis. Our skilled care coordinators and dementia care specialists are experienced and offer boundless compassion to individual caregivers and family groups who seek ideas and support to manage the needs of their loved ones. Learning techniques and strategies for managing challenging situations and learning to care for oneself is essential to avoid burnout and damage. This service continues to grow because most of us will find ourselves in this role at some point in time and each situation is unique.
On the other end of the life spectrum, JFCS provides ample opportunities for parents of young children to strengthen their parenting and caregiving skills. Through our PJ Library program, in addition to receiving monthly books and other materials designed to promote child development and family bonding, parents can join in activities for themselves and their families to ease fatigue and the stress of 24-hour caregiving for their little ones. Sharing in the joys and oys of providing love and learning is one of the takeaways from PJ programs.
JFCS offers caregiving planning and programs for all ages, including end-of-life spectrum, regardless of your ability to pay or how you identify. Check our website regularly to access this information. We aspire to be the source for all your caregiving needs. Here for All…Always.