Free training, support for family caregivers

The Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold the following peer support meetings in October. This month’s focus is “Managing Stress,” with a viewing of “Humor Your Stress,” presented by Loretta Roche, faculty member of Mind/Body Medical Institute in Boston,” and discussion of how to reduce stress during the holidays.

Oct. 4, Caregiver support meeting at Sterling Senior Center, 1 p.m.

Oct. 11, Caregiver support meeting at Soldotna Senior Center, 1 p.m.

Oct. 18, Alaska Day holiday: Caregiver support meeting at Kenai Senior Center is cancelled.

Oct. 19, Caregiver support meeting at Anchor Point Senior Center, hosted by Paula Koch, 3 p.m.

Oct. 25, Caregiver support meeting at Soldotna Senior Center, 1 p.m.

Support meetings allow you to share your experiences as a caregiver, or support someone who is a caregiver. If you are helping a family member of friend by being a caregiver, learn what kind of help is available. There is no charge for these services and everyone is invited to attend.

For more information, call Shelley or Judy at (907) 262-1280.

The Homer Family Caregiver meetings take place on the second and fourth Thursday of each month (Sept. 8 and 22) at Homer Senior Center, 2 to 3:30 p.m. Call for more information, 235-4555.


The Senior and Caregiver Resource Center at Southeast Senior Services in Juneau offers a call-in support group for residents of Southeast Alaska. The meeting time is the second Thursday of each month (Oct. 13) at noon. Call for more information, toll free 866-746-6177.

The Ketchikan Family Caregiver Support Group meets the second Friday of each month (Oct. 14), upstairs at the Ketchikan Senior Center at noon.

The Sitka Family Caregiver Support Group meets the third Wednesday of each month (Oct. 19). For more information, call Brave Heart Volunteers, 747-4600.

Other locations

For information on caregiver support group meetings around the state:

Anchorage, 561-3313

Fairbanks, 452-2277

Homer, 235-4555

Juneau, 463-6164 or 463-6198

Ketchikan, 225-8080

Kodiak, 486-6181

Nome, 443-4507

Palmer/Wasilla, 746-3413

Sitka, 747-4600

Family caregiver tip of the month

Autumn is my favorite time of the year, however in Alaska this season can be challenged by the weather, when we go from the beauty of the colors to the beauty of snow covering, and it may come sooner than later. Seasons of change often happen to family caregivers the same way, short and unpredictable. How you handle that change is possibly the only thing you have left in your control.

Coming up, the month of November is National Family Caregivers Month. This year’s theme is “Take Care to Give Care.” This theme says a lot: Taking care of yourself requires discipline needed for your own health, maintenance and stress relief.

You have to look out for your own needs in order to provide for another’s. Make sure you have the proper nutrition, get proper rest and have a stress outlet. Develop a give-and-take attitude where you agree to compromise your busy schedule to get the necessary element of health, welfare, maintenance and protection of yourself to have the shared benefit of being able to care for the needs of another.

– Judy Warren, Kenai Peninsula National Family Caregiver Support Program