November is National Family Caregivers (NFC) Month. It is a time to celebrate and honor family caregivers across the country. The non-profit organization, Caregiver Action Network, commemorates NFC month each year by announcing a theme to raise awareness of different family caregiver issues. The theme for the year, 2021, is #CaregiverAnd. The #CaregiverAnd theme is about encouraging family caregivers to pursue their passions and enrich their lives by celebrating themselves and their identities. This theme was chosen because far too often family caregivers forget to take the emphasizes off their loved one for a moment, to focus on themselves. Being a family caregiver is an amazingly important role to tackle, however it is essential to take time for oneself to prevent burnout or depression. Family caregivers should not lose sight of who they are and have a life that feels complete, with different hobbies, interests, and passions. Celebrate NFC month by encouraging all family caregivers to remember it is okay to put themselves first.
How to Celebrate National Family Caregivers Month
Throw a party: Caregivers often forget how important the work they do is. Throwing a party to say thank-you can be a thoughtful way to show appreciation.
Share on social media: Raising awareness on social media is a simple way to honor family caregivers. Use the hashtag, #CaregiverAnd, on all social media pages to bring to light what unique characteristics family caregivers have, other than caring for their loved one.
Give a card: A written thank-you is as appreciated as a verbal one. Write a card to let them know what how much their work as a family caregiver has meant. Family caregivers do so much without asking for anything in return. Shower them with love this month to remind them that their superhero work is valued and appreciated.
According to the AARP, a U.S. based organization focusing of issues affecting people over 50, half of family caregivers are performing medical/nursing tasks for individuals with challenges in physical, cognitive, and behavioral health. They carry a heavier responsibility than those who do not perform these tasks, spending more than twice as many hours per week providing care. Proving this extensive care can be emotionally and physically draining, which is why it is crucial family caregivers remember to take time to themselves to stay mentally and physically healthy. Celebrate the efforts of family caregivers this month to recognize and honor their hard work and dedication to helping others.
1. “National Family Caregivers Month - #Caregiverand.” Caregiver Action Network, National Family Caregivers Association DBA Caregiver Action Network, 22 Oct. 2021, https://www.caregiveraction.org/national-family-caregivers-month.