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A caregiver is a family member or friend who
provides unpaid care for a loved one living with
a disability, illness, or aging.
Do you support a family member with a brain injury, mental illness or addiction?
Does your spouse have heart disease, arthritis,
cancer, MS, ALS, Parkinson’s, or dementia?
Do you help a parent with tasks such as grocery shopping, house maintenance, medical appointments, or personal care?
Are you the parent of a child with high needs or a disability?
Are you the main person who checks on and/or helps a relative,
neighbour or friend because “there’s no one else”?
IF SO, YOU ARE A CAREGIVER
The examples above are just the beginning; the list of conditions that can make you a caregiver is endless.
4 to 5 million Canadians are caregivers. Their unpaid labour of love provides more than 80% of the care needed by people with long-term conditions. If these services were paid for, it would cost our health care and social services systems more than $9 billion a year.
Caregiving can be stressful, time-consuming, expensive, and career-limiting. Trying to balance caregiving with child care, work, and your family and social life can be nearly impossible unless you have the support you need and deserve.
It can be hard to ask for help, but caregiving is often difficult to manage on your own. In the past, whole communities would work together to support their most vulnerable members. Caregivers need support. Learning about, planning for, and connecting with helpful people and resources can help you ‘take care of yourself’ on the caregiving journey.