Family members, friends, and neighbors devote countless hours caring for relatives and loved ones in the role of Caregiver. They are the glue that holds things together for an individual recovering from an illness, surgery or injury or managing a mental or physical disability. They help with daily activities such as bathing, feeding and medication management, help make and keep doctor appointments and serve as a companion for their loved one.
“It takes a special person to be a Caregiver. They are compassionate, patient, reliable and trustworthy – all out of the goodness of their heart,” said Barbara Murray, Maryland branch director for Peninsula Home Care. “Caregiving can be challenging and demanding, but for many, it can also be one of the most rewarding experiences in life.”
Peninsula Home Care believes that National Family Caregiver Month and Home Care Month, both celebrated each November, is a time to honor those who graciously dedicate themselves to helping others in need. The company is launching the “Unsung Heroes Caregiver Makeover Contest,” and needs the help of the community.
PHC is in search of nominations of people in Southern Delaware and the Maryland Eastern Shore who have served as caregivers for individuals 50 years and older. One Caregiver from each state will be selected to win a makeover, including hair and makeup, apparel and prizes.
To nominate an Unsung Hero Caregiver, complete the brief application at www.peninsulahomecare.com. Nominations are open from November 5 to November 28, 2018. Winners will be selected and notified between December 3 and December 5 and will be featured in media of all types, including social media, public relations, and marketing. Complete rules posted are on the website.
Caregivers Don’t See Themselves as Heroes
There are millions of caregivers across the nation serving the aging population, and many do not take or always have the time to care for themselves.
“The old saying is true: ‘You can’t take care of others well unless you take care of yourself,’” said Murray. “It’s very important that Caregivers make sure they stay mentally, emotionally and physically healthy – for their loved one, but for themselves as well.”
While only two Caregivers will win the Unsung Heroes Makeover Contest, all should feel good about their hard work and dedication. Murray offers eight tips to help Caregivers not only survive, but thrive:
- Make your own health a priority. Eat well and get enough sleep.
- Accept help from others. People who offer genuinely want to help.
- Communicate effectively with doctors to avoid confusion and crisis.
- Seek support from other Caregivers in support groups, at your house of worship and/or with friends.
- Take time to recharge doing something you like – read, take a walk, workout or meet a friend for lunch.
- Organize medical information so it’s up to date and easy to access.
- Learn more about available caregiver resources in the community.
- Know what legal authority you have in case of emergency.
About Peninsula Home Care
Providing care for more than 30 years, Peninsula Home Care, in Salisbury and Ocean Pines/Berlin, Maryland, ensures that all patients are involved in their plan of care and strives to give them every opportunity to maintain their independence in the home. The agency has served more than 39,000 patients on Delmarva and was designated as a Peninsula Regional Medical Center preferred home care provider in 2017. For more information, visit www.peninsulahomecare.com.