Do you provide care and assistance to someone who needs help with daily living? Whether you provide care for a parent, child, spouse, sibling or loved one due to aging, disability or a chronic condition, you are a caregiver. You may have become a caregiver suddenly and without warning, or perhaps your role evolved slowly over time.
Do you find the care tasks prevent you from doing things you want or need to do to have a healthy and balanced lifestyle? Is it getting difficult to maintain your social and family relationships or to be involved in your community because of the care you provide? Respite can help restore and strengthen your ability to continue providing care for your loved one.
Respite is temporary care that relieves primary caregivers from their caregiving responsibilities. The length of a respite break depends on your personal situation. It might be a couple of hours to go shopping, have a medical appointment, take a nap, visit friends, exercise, or enjoy a recreational or community activity. Or it might be a couple of days or weeks to tend to personal business, participate in a special event or take a vacation. It is a resource to not only help ensure the health and well-being of you as a caregiver, but also for your family as a whole. The care you provide is important, and it is equally important to take a break and rejuvenate.
Respite care can be an informal arrangement provided by a friend, neighbor or relative. It can also be a formal arrangement provided by a trained individual you select and hire or by personal care workers sent to you through a service organization. Caregivers can chose between in-home respite and out-of-home respite options.
The benefits of respite care are life changing when it comes to reducing stress and anxiety, strengthening and preserving families, ensuring caregivers have time to care for their own health, empowering families to stay involved in their communities and delaying out-of-home placements.
The Kansas Lifespan Respite Care Project began in 2010 with a federal grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Administration for Community Living/Administration on Aging. This was made possible by the authorization of the Lifespan Respite Care Act
in 2006 under Title XXIX of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C 201).
The goal of the Kansas Lifespan Respite Project is to expand access to and improve the quality of respite services for residents across the state regardless of age, disability or special need. The Kansas Lifespan Respite Project has worked to advance the following objectives:
- Expand coordination, participation and dissemination of respite resources resulting in a statewide respite network.
- Increase family caregiver access to and ease in securing respite providers.
- Increase availability of qualified respite providers and skilled caregivers statewide.
Key partners of the Kansas Lifespan Respite Project include:
- Kansas Aging and Disability Resource Center- The Aging and Disability Resource Center (ADRC) is a trusted source of information where people of all ages, abilities and income levels - and their caregivers - can go to obtain assistance in planning for their future long-term service and support needs.
- Kansas Lifespan Respite Coalition - Established in 2007, the Kansas Lifespan Respite Coalition works to promote access to and use of respite care for all Kansas caregivers through community awareness, public/political advocacy, education, and collaboration, by providing a statewide respite care system.
- Objectives of the Coalition
- Educate those responsible for and in need of respite care
- Connect existing resources that provide respite services
- Explore and obtain funding to better provide respite services
- Locate training options for those interested in providing respite care
- Identify gaps within care programs and develop strategies to address these gaps