Pictured above, from left to right: Sandy Walker, Karen Helbert, John Heckman, Barbara Torke, Faith Heckman, Diane Grudt, Front row left to right Leah Lewis, Sharon Lund, Christina Rios, Jane Dupree
Certificates of completion for the first “Powerful Tools for Caregivers” series were awarded Monday, March 9th, 2015. The “Powerful Tools for Caregivers” series is an educational program designed to help family caregivers reduce stress, communicate effectively, take care of one’s self, reduce guilt, anger, and depression, make tough decisions, and set goals.
In anonymous surveys, participants say the following about the classes:
  • “I now feel more equipped with useful tools and information to take care of myself and to communicate my own needs and feeling to others.”

  • “This was an awesome class. I learned so much and how to deal with problems in my life.”

  • “I feel more confident and hopeful.”

Jane Dupree and Sandy Walker, co-presenters of the class, were gratified to offer these wonderful students their time, caregiving options, and solutions to the powerful challenges that caregivers face.
“Powerful Tools for Caregivers” was developed as a 6 week educational program to provide family caregivers with with tools to increase their self-care and confidence, and is based on the highly successful “Chronic Disease Self-Management Program” developed by Dr. Kate Lorig and her colleagues at Stanford University. Research studies find high rates of depression and anxiety among caregivers, leaving them with an increased vulnerability to health problems. Caregivers frequently cite restriction of personal activities and social life as problems. They often feel they have no control over events and that feeling powerless has a significant negative impact on caregivers’ physical and emotional health. Data from class participant evaluations indicates that the PTC program significantly improves: self-care behaviors, management of emotions, self-efficacy and increased confidence in coping with caregiving demands, and use of community resources.
An introduction class to Powerful Tools “Managing Stress” will be presented at the upcoming April 15, 2015 Caregiver Summit in Montrose by Jane and Sandy.