Laval caregivers association to hold English conference

By Robin Della Corte

Laval’s caregivers association (ALPA) will be holding a second conference in English, May 31, where a social worker from Laval’s health and social services centre (CSSS) will talk about the transition from home to a residence. The two dollar seminar will start at 1:30 p.m. at 1717 St. Martin, suite 350A.

“All caregivers need support,” emphasized ALPA director France St. George. “This conference is a good place to get the information and to get to exchange views with other caregivers for advice about the transition and how to make it easier.”

ALPA’s conferences are now held in both French and English but the English sessions are a novelty, thanks to the initiative of one of their sponsors, APPUI Laval, which asked for sessions to serve the city’s English-speaking population.

“We did it because we wanted to give our support for all caregivers, including the English community in Laval,” St. George said.

The first English conference in March attracted six people, which according to St. George credited as a “good success.”

ALPA hopes to organize English sessions every two or three months. A third English get-together is already slated for September.

“This conference will help the transition for both the caregiver and the person in need,” St. George said. “It will help prepare you to reflect on when the right time is to move a loved-one to a nursing home.”

St. George said that most caregivers tend to feel guilty and unsure when the right time is to make the move to an institutional setting.

The conference aims to teach the caregiver and the person being cared for that the new placement is not a separation but rather a transition. The caregiver can still support the loved one, but in a new context of help.

“If the caregiver is too sick or with advancing age can no longer take care of their loved one, this is usually when a residence is needed,” she said. “The most important part is the reflection, knowing when is the right time—not just for the person but for you and your family.”

According to the ALPA, caregivers are seen as people who take care of loved ones or someone close, whose tasks goes beyond the usual role and require significant support.

“The caregiver and loved one have to do this together,” St. George said. “It’s not easy, but the process of reflecting is very important.”

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