Senior Voice Staff 

Free training, support for family caregivers


August 1, 2020

Editor’s note: This schedule may change, due to coronavirus safety measures. Be sure to confirm with the host agency prior to visiting.

With senior centers still closed, the Kenai Peninsula Family Caregiver Support Program will hold all peer support meetings in August at its new office location, 44539 Sterling Highway, Suite 202 in the Blazy Mall in Soldotna. Social distancing will be respected, and masks will be worn at the office meetings, and virtual attendance via Zoom can be arranged for those who can’t make it in person. Different topics will be discussed at each meeting, as detailed below. The schedule is as follows:

Aug. 4, 1 p.m.  Topic: Summer Activities, How Are You Spending Your Summer with Your Loved One?

Aug. 11, 1 p.m. Topic: How to Advocate.

Aug. 18, 1 p.m. Topic: How to Include Family Members Who Don’t Live Close.

Aug. 25, 1 p.m. Topic: The Caregiver’s 10 Commandments

There is no charge for these services and everyone is invited to attend. If you can’t make a scheduled meeting, Staff will be on hand in the new office weekdays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and the coffee pot is always on. Stop by for a visit.

For more information, call Rachael or Judy at 907-262-1280.

The Homer Family Caregiver meetings take place on the second and fourth Thursdays of each month (Aug. 13 and 27) at Homer Senior Center, 2 to 3:30 p.m. Hosted by Pam Hooker. Call for more information, 235-4555.

Palmer caregiver support group meets at Palmer Senior Center (aka Mat-Su Senior Services) the first Friday of each month (Aug. 7), 10 to 11:30 a.m. Contact Janice Downing, Alzheimer’s Resource of Alaska, 746-3413.


The Senior and Caregiver Resource Center at Southeast Senior Services in Juneau offers a call-in support group for residents of Southeast Alaska. Call for more information, 463-6177 or 463-6181.

The Ketchikan Family Caregiver Support Group meets the second Friday of each month (Aug. 14), upstairs at the Ketchikan-Saxman Senior Center, 2 to 3 p.m.

The Sitka Family Caregiver Support Group meets the fourth Friday of each month (Aug. 28). 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

Ketchikan, 225-8080

Kodiak, 486-6181

Nome, 443-4507

Family caregiver tip of the month

As more of the COVID-19 virus knowledge becomes available, some of the common thinking by many is refuted, such as that masks are not protection for you, that they only protect others from your germs. As studies confirm, there is more evidence now that masks also provide protection for you. The understanding that is important is that by using a mask you breathe in only a small amount of virus, which can lead to no disease or a much milder infection. The importance of mask-wearing unfortunately has become more political than preventive. Preventive language needs to become the norm as important in stressing the use of masks. The main focus in mask-wearing should be based on the aspect of virus control by those who do not show visible symptoms yet can still spread the virus. A study published in Nature Medicine said that “the viral load is highest early during the disease and 44% of transmissions are believed to occur when the infected person has no symptoms”.

Protect yourself and others, help rein in the pandemic, wear a mask.

- Judy Warren, Kenai Peninsula National Family Caregiver Support Program


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