Georgia Wins Award to Benefit Older Adults and Caregivers

Published 1:30pm Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Special to The Post-Searchlight

ATLANTA – Georgia’s caregivers will gain access to free wellness workshops for themselves and loved ones plus Alzheimer’s telephone support, thanks to a new grant awarded by the U.S. Administration on Aging (AoA). The Georgia Department of Human Services (DHS), Division of Aging Services (DAS) competed and received one of only four AoA Systems Integration grants issued nationwide.  Other award winners are New York, Minnesota and Ohio.

“As a result of this grant, Georgians across the state will get greater access to and control over the services and supports they will need now and in the future to help them remain at home and in the community for as long as they choose,” said Dr. James J. Bulot, Director of DHS’ Division of Aging Services.

The Division will use part of the funds to expand the face-to-face version of the popular Stanford University Chronic Disease Self Management Program across the state. In this six-week workshop led by trained volunteers, Georgians learn tools to deal with the emotional and physical aspects of living with a chronic condition or caring for someone with one or more conditions. The program is offered online statewide or in group classroom settings in most regions.

The grant also addresses the unique needs of individuals with Alzheimer’s Disease. Caregivers and persons with early-stage Alzheimer’s Disease will be able to get telephone support through collaboration between the Division and the Alzheimer’s Association, Georgia Chapter. The statewide program will feature on-call care coordination guidance and help with emotional challenges.

The Division will also make free general caregiver education more widely available to Georgians by offering research-based programs that increase caregivers’ skill, knowledge, and confidence while promoting self-care and reducing stress.

All of Georgia’s 12 Area Agencies on Aging currently offer programs and supports designed to help family caregivers. For more information about services for older adults, call the Division of Aging Services toll-free at (866) 55-AGING (552-4464) or visit on the Web at http://www.aging.dhr.georgia.gov.

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