AARP sponsors forum on family caregiving

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AARP Connecticut is hosting an informational forum on family caregiving on June 17,  featuring AARP’s national Family/Caregiving expert, Amy Goyer, author of the ebook “Juggling Work and Caregivng.”  Choosing to Care: A Forum on Family Caregiving, is aimed at empowering family caregivers with knowledge and resources to assist them in caring for loved ones who can no longer care for themselves.  The forum takes place from 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at The Boathouse, 20 Leibert Road in Hartford’s Riverfront Park.

The event is part of a larger effort by AARP Connecticut to hear from unpaid family caregivers about the challenges they face and the kinds of information and additional resources necessary to assist them in their role as caregiver.  AARP also is releasing the results of a new statewide poll that shows overwhelming support for more resources and training for family caregivers so these individuals can continue to help their older loved ones remain at home as they age.

The typical family caregiver in Connecticut is a married woman in her 50s. Current caregivers are nearly as likely to be working full-time (43 percent) as their non-caregiving counterparts (46 percent). Still, about 15 percent of all caregivers surveyed say they have taken more than a week off of work to take care of an adult family member in the past year. The survey shows substantial support for proposals that would provide help to working caregivers, such as ensuring that employers cannot fire an employee for taking time off for family caregiving purposes and requiring employers to provide a limited amount of leave to employees who have to take time off for family caregiving purposes, either unpaid or paid. View the full survey results here.

Goyer will present the keynote address at the June 17 forum and will speak at a Caregiver Listening Session on June 18 at Darien Town Hall from 12:00 p.m.-2:30 p.m.  Goyer will share personal stories, hard-earned tips and expert advice gleaned over many years of caring for her parents.  Her recently released ebook, Juggling Work and Caregiving is available to download for free at: www.aarp.org/caregiving.

The June 17 forum also will feature a panel discussion and audience Q and A session with state policymakers that will focus on ways to better support and address the needs of family caregivers in Connecticut and nationwide.  Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman also is scheduled to participate.

Participants will have access to resources from a number of state agencies and community organizations, and be able to network with other caregivers in a relaxed and serene setting.  The free event includes a picnic lunch that attendees may enjoy along the scenic Connecticut River.

Seating for the June 17 forum is limited to 100 people.  Advance registration is required by June 13.  For additional information or to register, please call 877-926-8300 or visit: http://aarp.cvent.com/CTCaregiving617.

Find additional resources for family caregivers at www.aarp.org/caregiving.

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Amanda Cuda

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