Free training, support for family caregivers
April 1, 2018
The Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold the following peer support meetings in April. This month’s focus is on the basic spiritual needs throughout life, what may or may not change when someone is living with dementia, and how to best meet those needs. Resource materials include a DVD presentation by dementia expert Teepa Snow and the Rev. Linn Possell.
April 3, Caregiver support meeting at Sterling Senior Center, 1 p.m.
April 10, Caregiver support meeting at Soldotna Senior Center, 1 p.m.
April 17, Caregiver support meeting at Kenai Senior Center, 1 p.m.
April 18, Caregiver support meeting at Anchor Point Senior Center, hosted by Paula Koch, 3 p.m.
April 24, open house at Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program office in Soldotna, Blazy Mall, Suite #209, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Check out the lending library, durable goods loan closet, ask questions or just visit over a cup of coffee.
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 Sharon or Judy at (907) 262-1280.
The Homer Family Caregiver meetings take place on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month (April 12 and 26) at Homer Senior Center, 2 to 3:30 p.m. Hosted by Pam Hooker. 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 (April 12) at noon. Call for more information, toll free 866-746-6177.
The Ketchikan Family Caregiver Support Group meets the second Friday of each month (April 13), upstairs at the Ketchikan-Saxman Senior Center, 2 to 3 p.m.
The Sitka Family Caregiver Support Group meets the third Wednesday of each month (April 18). For more information, call Brave Heart Volunteers, 747-4600.
For information on caregiver support group meetings around the state:
Juneau, 463-6164 or 463-6198
Family caregiver tip of the month
Regular exercise is the best health prescription for aging. Alaska is slowly transforming from winter to the promise of spring and now is a good time to review your health goals and develop an exercise routine to help transform yourself. Even a little activity can bring results, according to recent statistics. Going from no activity to any amount of activity can bring a marked decline in premature death risk. Adding additional amounts of exercise continue those benefits with the greatest results when you go from doing nothing to something. The benefits of exercising your body may cut dementia risk, help prevent depression, lower your blood pressure and more. Exercising your brain may help increase cognition. The recommended amount is 2.5 hours of moderate intensity, such as walking briskly or cycling at least two times a week. However, even 30 minutes a week is more beneficial than none. The rule of thumb is more is better. So take a walk, do what you can, aim for mini workouts at first and do what works for you. Use the cooling down period to exercise your brain with a puzzle, crossword or sudoku and gain added cognitive benefit. Write your own prescription and start walking.
- Judy Warren, Kenai Peninsula National Family Caregiver Support program