Every day, millions of Albertans face challenges associated with aging, illness, mental and emotional health or disability. Yet our health care system and social services cannot do everything to support their needs. So, unpaid family and friends like you step in to fill the gaps. Unfortunately, in doing so, many caregivers become stressed, overwhelmed and under-resourced.
Did you know that there are almost one million caregivers in Alberta? That is more than one in four Albertans — individuals of every age, gender, culture and background — currently caring for a loved one.
Caregiving may be as intensive as living with the care recipient full-time, or as simple as driving a loved one to doctor’s appointments, taking them food or mowing their lawn. Anyone who supports someone with an illness or disability, or is caring for an aging friend or family member, is a caregiver.
More than half of Alberta’s caregivers are exhausted, anxious and lonely because caregiving comes with significant physical, emotional and financial burdens. Too many caregivers feel like they cannot ask for help or don’t know where to turn.
That’s why Caregivers Alberta is here.
We provide resources, support and education to help people provide care to family members or friends. Our services are wide-ranging to match the needs of caregivers: from our caregiver support line to one-on-one coaching and peer support groups to our award-winning caregiver education program, COMPASS for the Caregiver.
We serve caregivers, employers and healthcare professionals across Alberta. We are continually expanding our programs and support services, evolving them in response to caregivers’ needs. Beyond that, we also give caregivers the tools and resources they need to be more confident and resilient and, ultimately, create a sustainable caregiving journey.
To empower caregivers and promote their well-being.
An Alberta where caregivers are valued and supported.
Caregivers Alberta believes that our province’s caregivers deserve recognition and support for their contribution. This drives us to change how they are perceived and valued in society. We champion and empower caregivers and influence and strengthen policies to create a community of support. Caregivers make a vital contribution to society, and Caregivers Alberta is determined to showcase and encourage these heroes in everything we do.
Employee caregivers make up 35% of the total Canadian workforce and more than half of caregivers (60%) are juggling work and care responsibilities. Caregivers Alberta provides resources and education for employers to create a caregiver-friendly workplaces.
Caregivers Alberta offers programs and resources for healthcare professionals to learn essential, caregiver-centred core competencies such as:
- Respecting and meaningfully involving the care receiver’s family caregiver
- Working together to plan and deliver services
- Recognizing and addressing caregiver needs and preferences
- Integrating family caregivers as partners-in-care
As Alberta’s only dedicated caregiver organization, we offer wide-ranging services, from our caregiver support line, to one-on-one coaching and peer support groups to our award-winning Caregiver education program COMPASS. We serve caregivers and healthcare professionals all across Alberta.
There is already a large community of caregivers in Alberta – Caregivers Alberta connects and empowers them, building on their sense of pride and community to create a better, more sustainable future for everyone.
Caring for Caregivers
Many caregivers don’t think of themselves as caregivers – they’re simply taking care of people they care about. From complex needs to simple ones, Caregivers Alberta puts tools in caregivers’ toolbox, providing the support and resources to empower them.
No matter where caregivers are in their journey, Caregivers Alberta is there to support them. Whether just beginning their role or doing it for decades, Caregivers Alberta provides support and understanding to caregivers, and will connect them to their peers dealing with similar experiences.
Caregivers Alberta was founded in 2001 by a grassroots group of caregivers dedicated to recognizing the essential work of caregivers.
In order to understand the scope and impact of caregiving, Caregivers Alberta conducted a series of focus groups in 2003. This research was summarized in the “Shining a Light” report, which determined that family caregivers’ contributions were largely invisible to society and that caregivers often suffer in silence. The outcome of these focus groups has shaped Caregivers Alberta’s direction, programs and initiatives.
A grant from the Alberta Ministry of Health from 2013-2017 enabled Caregivers Alberta to spread our caregiver and healthcare professional training across the province. A second grant from Alberta Health from 2019-2022 led to the development of additional programs such as our one-on-one Caregiver Coaching program, Work & Care employer education program, transition to Caregiver-Centred Care healthcare professional training and two new volunteer opportunities for Senior Caregiver Ambassadors and Peer Support Facilitators.
As Alberta’s only dedicated caregiver organization, we connect and empower the large community of caregivers in Alberta, building on their sense of pride and community to create a better, more sustainable future for caregivers and those for whom they care.
In addition, we partner with organizations throughout the province on advocacy and awareness initiatives. The more people who know about the burden caregivers carry, the more our society will understand the need for better policies and programs to support them.