November is National Family Caregivers Month.
2.7 million Pennsylvanians care for aging parents and spouses who want to stay at home, instead of costly institutions. These family caregivers provide unpaid services valued at about $20 billion annually. Joe Griffiths of Lancaster has cared for his wife for 2 years. He saysâ€¦
GRIFFITHS: SHORTLY FOLLOWING SURGERY, MY WIFE SUFFERED A STROKE THAT LEFT HER UNABLE TO WALK OR LIFT HER LEFT ARM. I DID EVERYTHING I COULD TO HELP HER STAY AT HOME. I LEARNED HOW TO PUT HER ARM IN A SPLINT AND HER LEG IN A BRACE AND TRANSPORT HER FROM THE BED TO HER WHEELCHAIR. IT WASNâ€™T EASY, BUT I WOULDNâ€™T HAVE IT ANY OTHER WAY.
This week, A-A-R-P launched I Heart Caregivers to collect stories like Joe Griffithâ€™s. AARP Pennsylvania State President Jim Palmquist saysâ€¦
PALMQUIST: OUR SILENT ARMY OF FAMILY CAREGIVERS HELPS SENIORS TO LIVE INDEPENDENTLY, WITH DIGNITY, EACH AND EVERY DAY. WE WANT TO HONOR THESE UNSUNG HEROES â€“ WHILE AT THE SAME TIME FIGHT TO GET THEM MORE SUPPORT, TRAINING, HELP AT HOME.
The organization will work to pass the Caregiver Advise, Record, Enable â€“ CARE â€“ Act in the next legislative session.
For more go to A-A-R-P dot org slash I Heart Caregivers.