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older driver

Are you concerned with the safety of an older driver? The Older Driver Family Assistance Program provides information on how best to communicate with a mature driver your concern about their driving safety and provide them with the information they need to continue to drive safely.

In extreme cases such as dementia, driving may no longer be an option. Information is available on the steps you can take to make this transition easier. Referrals for driver skills assessment, driver re-training, in-car driving evaluations and resources for transportation are available.

For further information, call (914) 813-6188.

 

For additional Internet resources on providing caregiving for an older adult, try these Web sites. 

CAPS
Children of Aging Parents is a nonprofit, charitable organization whose mission is to assist the nation's nearly 54 million caregivers of the elderly or chronically ill with reliable information, referrals and support, and to heighten public awareness that the health of the family caregivers is essential to ensure quality care of the nation's growing elderly population.
Family Caregiver Alliance
The Family Caregiver Alliance, founded in 1977, was the first community-based nonprofit organization in the country to address the needs of families and friends providing long-term care at home. FCA now offers programs at national, state and local levels to support and sustain caregivers. 
National Alliance for Caregiving
The National Alliance for Caregiving is dedicated to providing support to family caregivers and the professionals who help them and to increasing public awareness of issues facing family caregivers.
Caregiver Action Network
The Caregiver Action Network is the nation’s leading family caregiver organization working to improve the quality of life for more than 65 million Americans who care for loved ones with chronic conditions, disabilities, disease, or the frailties of old age. CAN serves a broad spectrum of family caregivers ranging from the parents of children with special needs, to the families and friends of wounded soldiers; from a young couple dealing with a diagnosis of MS, to adult children caring for parents with Alzheimer’s disease.

According to recent studies, as many as 22 million family caregivers are employed.  Here are some hints that may help if you are one of them: 

  • Talk to your employer and let them know what is happening.
  • Ask if your company has an employee assistance program to help caregivers.
  • Inquire if working part-time or job sharing is feasible.  Ask about your company’s flextime policy and see if you can flex on the days you have to take care of caregiving tasks.
  • Do your caregiving tasks on your own time such as your lunch hour. Keep your caregiving role and working role as separate as possible.
  • Find out about community resources that you can use to support you in your caregiving role and give services to your loved one while you are at work.

Staff from the Westchester County Family Caregiver Support Program can present free “Lunch & Learn” educational programs to Westchester County businesses, so employed caregivers can get helpful information at their place of employment.

For further information, call the Family Caregiver Support Program at (914) 813-6441.
 

Image of senior man walkingCounty residents caring for a senior with Alzheimer’s disease or other forms of dementia should be aware of  Project Lifesaver, which just might save the lives of their elderly loved ones should they wander from their homes.

Project Lifesaver is a free program that uses radio-frequency technology to find seniors who stray and return them safely to their families.

Through Project Lifesaver, seniors are fitted with bracelets with special batteries. Then, should they wander away, specifically trained and equipped police from the Westchester County Department of Public Safety can find them using radio signals that the bracelets transmit.

Project Lifesaver is sponsored by the Westchester County Department of Senior Programs and Services (DSPS) and its Livable Communities initiative, the Westchester Public/Private Partnership for Aging Services and International Project Lifesaver.  The program is administered by Westchester Jewish Community Services.

DSPS Commissioner Mae Carpenter said, "Project Lifesaver is one of many programs the department sponsors to support caregivers. Caring for an elderly person is an act of love by a family member, but is often an exhausting and lonely job. That's why neighbors and others in the community must volunteer to lend a hand.”

Contact Information

Westchester Jewish Community Services is the current program administrator for Project Lifesaver. For more information or to register, call Westchester Jewish Community Services at (914) 761-0600 Ext. 230 or email .

Consider these suggestions seriously. The better you take care of yourself the better you will be able to care for your loved one.

Take care of yourself
Eat right, exercise, don’t smoke or abuse drugs or alcohol.

Include your loved one in making decisions
Remember they are an adult, and unless they are cognitively impaired, they have a right to be included in decisions regarding their life.

Ask for help
When people offer help, accept it. Keep a list of tasks that others can do for you, and enlist family and friends if possible.

Take a break
Ask family and friends to sit with your loved one while you go out and do something for yourself. Inquire about formal respite services that may be available in your area.

Join a support group
Support groups let you connect with other caregivers who are going through similar experiences and who may offer helpful suggestions to help you in your caregiving role.

For more tips and hints, call (914) 813-6441.