Upcoming Workshop April 23rd

Help for Family Caregivers

Are your parents aging and needing more help?  Are you supporting an aging friend or family member? Do you work with seniors and their families? Take away a toolbox full of information, tips and local resources. 
  • When:   Saturday June 11,  1:00 - 4:30 pm 
  • Where: Nurses Residence – West Lounge  
  •                Brandon Regional Health Centre  
  • Fee: $20 to be paid at the door
  • Register in advance:  Please email wherenext@shaw.ca

Resources for Caregivers of Seniors in Manitoba

1. Seniors and Healthy Aging Secretariat

Description: The Seniors and Healthy Aging Secretariat is part of the department of Health, Healthy Living and Seniors. It acts as a central point of contact for seniors, their family members and organizations. Website: http://www.gov.mb.ca/shas/index.html Review: This updated site is a goldmine of information. Save it as a favorite! You will want to come back here again and again on your caregiving journey.
Focus: Caregivers of seniors
Where to start: Begin with the Home Page.
Don't Miss: The publications page. You will want to have your own hard copy of A Guide For Caregivers. Order it. Read it. Fill it full of Post-It notes.

Best Pages:

Who Knew?  That there is a Seniors Information Line, an information and referral line for seniors, family members and caregivers and professionals working with seniors. In Winnipeg: 204-945-6565 Toll-free: 1-800-665-6565 Email: seniors@gov.mb.ca

2. Caregiving with Confidence (Formerly Rupert's Land Caregiver Services)

Description: Caregiving with Confidence is the non-profit organization that supports caregivers in Manitoba.

Website: http://caregivingwithconfidence.org/  

Review: When you need someone to talk to, this is THE organization that will give you one-on-one personal support.
Focus: Caregivers of seniors
Where to start: Call (204) 452-9491 and talk to the caring, informed staff.  

Services Offered:

· Time-out for Caregivers: A volunteer trained as a respite companion comes to the home for a few hours so the family caregiver can have a break
· Telephone Support: Providing information, support and encouragement for caregivers
·  Ring-A-Ride: Assisted transportation for caregivers and recipients anywhere in the city limits by prior arrangement. Note: Ring-a-Ride users must live within postal codes, R3L, R3M, R3N, R3P, and part of R3T.
·  Support Group for Caregivers: Rupert’s Land Caregiver Services hosts a support group every second Saturday at 10:00 a.m. at 168 Wilton Street.
· Information & Referral: A resource bank of information about services  available throughout Manitoba
Who Knew?  That there is an organization that offers free support to Manitoba caregivers. For more information call (204) 452-9491 or email rlcs@mts.net

3. Safe To Ask Toolkit (Manitoba Institute of Patient Safety)

Description: The SAFE toolkit has information, tips and resources that can help people learn to be more involved in their healthcare.

URL: http://www.safetoask.ca/s.a.f.e.-toolkit.html
Review: This site is about much more than safety. S.A.F.E. stands for Self-Advocacy for Everyone. It is full of information on how to advocate for yourself and others with our healthcare system. This site is essential for those who have been diagnosed with a serious illness.
Focus: All Manitobans
Don't miss: The Safe to Ask Medication Card
Best Pages: (Read the summary and the full article)
   1. Know Your Patients Rights
   2. Choose Your Patient Advocate
   3. Know Your Healthcare Plan
   4. Access Your Medical Records 
Who Knew: That anyone can appoint a friend or family member to act as their Patient Advocate to help them navigate the system.
Be sure to complete the Patient Advocate Form.

    Adaptive Clothing

    April Showers and Taxes

    Be sure to maximize tax credits and deductions:
    • Primary Caregiver Tax Credit
    • Disability Tax Credit
    • Eligible Medical Expenses

    Clothing for Seniors with Disabilities

    Many seniors with physical and mental limitations have unique clothing needs. When my mom's dementia became severe she frequently stripped off her clothes. Fortunately, I discovered anti-strip underwear which allowed her to wear her own clothes and also protected her dignity. I recently visited the Adaptive Clothing Store at 1320 Portage Ave. In my experience they have quality adaptive clothing for seniors and are extremely helpful. I invited them to share information with us.

    Adaptive Clothing Store in Winnipeg

      Adaptive Clothing is a relatively new term, that’s why you’ve probably never heard of it. So what is it? Adaptive Clothing is medical device that is specifically designed to aid the dressing process for people with limited mobility. Adaptive Clothing simplifies the process of putting on and taking off clothes for both staff and patients, relieves stress and anxiety levels associated with the process as well as shortens the time of the procedures. Due to Adaptive Clothing being a medical device, the purchases are Tax Exempt if a doctor’s prescription is present. The following are the examples of the features unique to Adaptive Clothing.

    We can also carry wrap-around skirts and capris, bermuda shorts and many other clothing items for both men and women. These are just a few of the options that can provide a solution for arising challenges that are associated with the dressing.
    Another unique feature of Adaptive Clothing that comes usually without mentioning is the material that garments are made out of. Majority of our clients reside in personal care facilities, meaning that their clothing will be washed in the industrial machines using high temperature and harsh detergents. A regular garment will not withstand that and Adaptive Clothing will. Special designs will hold its shape and will not deteriorate and color pallet will remain vibrant longer as well.
    There can be a lot more said about adaptive clothing but it is best to see it with your own eyes to understand its benefits and feel the difference for yourself. We invite anyone who would like to learn more about Adaptive Clothing to stop by our store located at 1320 Portage Avenue, where our friendly staff will educate you and help you select the right option for your loved one if necessary. Our Spring Summer 2015 collection is already here, so there is no better time to stop by then now!
    Nadia Tuhari 
    Adaptive Clothing Store Manager

    Caregiver Stress

    I Am a Rock

    A few years ago, I shared with a friend that I was going through one of those "challenging times" that life throws at us. She looked at me and said, "You don't need to be a rock you know."
    I replied, "Yes, I do. I'm the Queen of Rocks."
    A brief argument ensued about which of us was tougher.
    I've been trying to write my February article all month but it has been difficult. My mom passed away peacefully on January 18th and I had the honour of being with her. I was her caregiver for over 8 years.
    Today as I think about most of my close friends, I find I am surrounded by "rocks".
    Linda's mom is in hospital awaiting placement in a nursing home. She has dementia and is in kidney failure. The doctor is not pleased that the family has decided against a pacemaker for their elderly mom.
    Lisa and Tom are caring for three elderly parents. They've just moved Lisa's dad to assisted living. Tom's mom and dad are in the same facility but his dad is in deteriorating health with dementia and Parkinson's.
    Judy just lost her 66 year old husband to cancer after two years of treatment including stem cell transplants that required them to live in another city for months.
    Sharon's dad has terminal cancer and is now at home with palliative care. He has been caring for her mom who has dementia. Sharon goes over at least twice a day making meals and checking in with her parents and staff. Sharon herself has recently been diagnosed with MS.
    Catherine has been her mother's caregiver for six years since her dad passed away. Her mother is legally blind and is in early stage dementia. I'm particularly concerned about Catherine because I see the signs of a serious depression common in long term caregivers.
    But we are not rocks. We are human beings. When the weight of love, duty, guilt, and responsibility becomes too much it is NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS. It's just time to call for reinforcements. Talk to your friends who've been there. Join a support group. Find a counsellor. Tell your doctor. Don't try to go it alone. Ask for support before you are crushed.