Caregiver's Corner

November is National Family Caregivers Month.  Join us as we celebrate and encourage caregivers like you in our community!


Warmth for the Journey - A Cozy Cafe for Caregivers - Tuesday., Nov. 13, 9:00 - 11:00 a.m.  -  Home Instead Senior Care, 600 University Blvd., Suite G

A morning cafe for caregivers and those they care for. You'll enjoy coffee, tea, fruit, and doughnuts, live music, informational opportunities, good conversation and new connections, and simply a time to relax.  For more information, contact Kathy.
VPAS Presents: Caregivers Corner - Resources and Self Care to Enrich Lives - Wed., Nov. 14, 10:00 - 11:30 a.m. - Braithwaite Studios
Join us as we explore how to overcome common challenges, practice self-care, and take advantage of caregiver resources in the community.  Come for the companionship and tips you can use every day! The $10 program fee includes a beverage and a scone or brownie.  Held at the charming Braithwaite Studios in Dayton, where you can peruse custom glasswork or sign up for glass etching lessons.  Bring a friend for this empowering morning out!  Register here.


Dementia Friends Workshop - Wed., Nov. 14, 3:00 - 4:00 p.m. - Maury River Senior Center, Buena Vista

Learn about the different types of dementia, how to communicate better with people living with with dementia, and how to help to create a dementia-friendly community.  Workshop will be held following VPAS Ambassador Orientation.  Register here


Issues in Aging Radio Show - Nov. 26, 2018 - 9:15 a.m. on WSVA 550 AM or 92.1 FM  

Topic: "Caregiving from the Trenches"

Hosted by VPAS Director of Senior Services in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, Beth Bland, with special guests Kathy Guisewite and a local caregiver.


RAISE Family Caregivers Act Signed Into Law

VPAS is celebrating the passage of Recognize, Assist, Include, and Engage (RAISE) Family Caregivers Act.  This legislation is paving the way for a coordinated national strategy addressing the needs of family caregivers, leading to better caregiver health and well-being as well as a higher quality of care for older adults.  For millions of caregivers who help loved ones remain in their homes, more support is coming.  

Locally, as many as one in three residents will be older adults by 2030, with the highest population in rural areas. This “grey wave” is increasing demand for caregivers of older adults, many of whom will become less independent and at greater risk of developing chronic health conditions as they age.

Most caregivers are family members, part of an unpaid workforce of 40 million people nationwide providing about $470 billion annually in unpaid care to their loved ones. The strain on them can be tremendous, negatively affecting their health, careers, finances, and parenting. As the number of aging residents in our area increases, the number of available caregivers is expected to decrease, adding to the strain. Studies show caregivers are more likely to suffer health problems as a result of the chronic stress they experience providing often around-the-clock-care for a frail older adult or disabled relative.  We're here to help!

The city of Harrisonburg proclaims November as Family Caregivers Month.  Read the proclamation.

Caregiving by the numbers

Caregivers Community Network (CCN)

In partnership with James Madison University, VPAS matches pairs of students with families that are caring for a frail older adult through the Caregivers Community Network (CCN) course.  Enrolled students provide weekly visits to provide social interaction with the care recipient while the caregiver takes a much needed break. 

How Does CCN Work?

In-home family caregivers are referred to CCN by health care providers, other community agencies, VPAS Case Managers, or through self referral.  Prospective host families will receive a home visit with the CCN Coordinator.  During this visit families will be assessed for eligibility for the program.  If eligible, an interest profile of the care recipient will be completed and a student match will be made.  Prior to making in-home visits JMU students must complete training on how to interact with older adults, particularly those who are frail and who have cognitive impairment.  Students visit the home weekly throughout the semester.  Visits last 2-3 hours.