November is National Family Caregivers Month

National Family Caregivers Month has been observed every November since 1994. Recognized by President Clinton when he signed the first proclamation in 1997, NFC month has been proclaimed by an American President annually ever since. November is a nationally recognized month in pursuit of drawing attention to the many challenges facing family caregivers, advocate for stronger public policy to address family caregiving issues, and raise awareness about community programs that support family caregivers. There are over 65 million American family members caring for their loved ones. If you are a family caregiver, take time this month to celebrate who you are, and the importance of what you are doing.

Family caregivers provide an unlimited amount of services such as: assisting with ambulation, assisting with personal hygiene, cooking, medication reminders, doctor appointments and emotional support everyday around the clock, just to name a few. This month focuses on the challenges facing family caregivers. It can be an extremely difficult responsibility for an adult child, who has a full time job and children of their own, to also care for their mom or dad at the same time. When finding a family member to be the caregiver, you have to find someone who has the passion, heart, reliability and trustworthiness to do the job.

“National Family Care Month provides an opportunity to advocate for stronger public policies to address family caregiving issues,” said Suzanne Mintz, president of the National Family Caregivers Association. “And it is a time to thank, support, educate, and celebrate family caregivers who are literally America’s primary long-term care providers. Eighty percent of long-term care is provided by families or friends.”

Family Caregivers Month is our acknowledgment of the difficulties caregivers face and allows us to highlight resources available to help them confront their very challenging job. This month, take a moment to reach out by sending a card of appreciation or a bouquet of flowers to brighten up a family caregiver’s day. While November may be the official month to recognize your acts as a family caregiver, every month and every day is one in which you make a difference.

Posted on November 1, 2010