The programme, a first for the New Zealand dementia community, is part of the Dementia Learning Centre, our hub of excellence for dementia education.
Caring for the Carers has a range of tips, resources and advice around mental and physical wellbeing, rest and relaxation, diet and lifestyle to ensure carer partners can better deal with the stresses of their role.
Caring for someone with dementia can be a tough journey, but it can also be a time of deep bonding and closer connections.
It’s a role that’s often filled by a spouse or close family members who do it because of the close personal relationship they have with the person they’re caring for.
So, they become very emotionally involved, which is great and means they take their role very seriously, but that commitment and dedication can also mean they devote more time and energy to the person they are supporting than to themselves.
Add to that a strong sense of isolation and limited availability of services to support them and you’ve got a recipe that can lead to mental and physical burnout when what we actually want is for the care partner to enjoy and feel fulfilled as much as possible by caring for someone they are close to.
When that happens you find the relationship can actually deepen.
There’s no cure and no treatment for dementia and everyone knows how that journey will end, so it’s very hard for both the person with the diagnosis and the care partner to remain positive.
That’s why it is so very important care partners have access to good support mechanisms and resources.
It’s not easy caring for someone with dementia by any means, but if our Caring for the Carers programme makes that journey just a bit easier then that’s all we ask.