The YWCA support to family caregivers program offers diverse support services and activities aimed at responding to the specific needs of each caregiver providing help to a senior or someone living with dementia in her entourage. We work to promote healthier relationships as well as emotional, psychological and physical well-being. Through accompanying caregivers, we also aim to increase their ability to be an agent of change in the defense of their interests and rights. The program is also implicated in the larger community with the goals of sensitizing the public to the role of family caregiver and of demystifying the health care system and social and community services. All of our services and activities are free.
Information: 514-866-9941, ext. 226
- Support and therapeutic services
- Social and wellness activities
- Legal clinic
- Feeling overwhelmed? – Tests
- Services in your workplace
Support and therapeutic services
Information and referral
A counsellor is available by telephone Monday to Friday, during work hours or by appointment in the evening. She will provide an empathetic ear, as well as information and support for your individual situation. With you, she will explore any needs or desire for services and activities offered through the Family Caregivers Program, or find other available resources that could be helpful to you.
Individual support and counselling
Individual sessions with a counsellor allow for a more in-depth consideration of your ongoing situation and needs. Your counsellor will meet with you regularly to support you emotionally, as well as accompany you through the many practical difficulties that the caregiving role involves. She can help lessen your load by finding information and resources for you, and by helping you to better understand and navigate the systems involved in managing the care and responsibilities you carry. She can work with you to find new ways of managing your existing situation. Your counsellor will listen to your worries, give you a safe space to vent, and help you with common caregiving experiences such as guilt, frustration and feeling overwhelmed. Individual support can be up to 12 sessions, and can be arranged at a time and frequency that is convenient for you. In certain cases, the location of the sessions can be adapted to your needs, or other alternatives such as telephone or internet sessions can be arranged.
Family Support and counselling
The help described in the previous section can also be offered to the caregiver WITH the person she cares for or with the family.
Art therapy is a therapeutic experience that uses creativity to express and become aware of certain emotions or situations. This process is aimed at bringing positive change to the participant’s current life difficulties. Various methods such as collage, drawing, painting, sculpture and more, are used to offer a new and tangible perspective of problems or feelings. The interaction between the creation and the creator encourages a deeper connection with the self in a safe and non-judgemental environment. No artistic ability is necessary. Art therapy is offered in both individual and group sessions.
Becoming a caregiver involves significant personal life adjustments, as well as changes in relationships, Adapting to all this can be difficult and even overwhelming. Most caregivers struggle at some point with finding a healthy life balance. Feelings of guilt, frustration, stress, worry and ongoing grief are extremely common. The Support to family caregivers program has created a series of workshops aimed at helping caregivers better understand many of these experiences and at finding ways to reduce the psychological and emotional load they often bring.
Current workshops :
- Finding balance : setting limits
- Adapting to changes
- In the person you care for
- In your personal life
- In your entourage
- Managing stress and anxiety
- Using anger
- Experiencing dementia
- Using dreams as a tool for personal development and problem solving.
Using dreams as a means of personal development and problem resolution
A space for caregivers to explore the content of their dreams in a group and have the possibility of finding solutions to problems they are experiencing. After the sharing of a dream by a participant, the group is invited to suggest different interpretations of the dream. These exchanges, as well as a brief creative response, are aimed at helping the participant better understand her dream. This in turn may help clarify or even resolve certain life difficulties. It is not necessary to remember your own dreams in order to participate in the group. Many caregivers experience personal development and understanding through listening to the interpretations of other people’s dreams.
Tuesdays, February 12, March 12, April 9 from 1 to 4 p.m.
Seeing aging differently
Confronted with the realities of aging in the people we are caring for, many of us adopt a negative view of our own aging process. And if it could be different? In this workshop, you will be guided through the exploration of different perceptions on aging to discover if it is possible to see the process more positively.
Thursday, March 28 from 1 to 3 p.m.
Social and wellness activities
A chance to give yourself some rest and relaxation amongst others who share the caregiving experience. A slow, easy yoga class with adaptation of the postures for people who have a physical limitation.
From January 19 to March 30 : Saturday mornings from 10 to 11:30 a.m.
Reiki is an ancient holistic energy healing system. It can act on all levels – physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. The practitioner is a channel for the universal life energy, flowing from her hands which are gently placed slightly above the body. The aim is to bring a sensation of calm and well-being to the recipient.
Various activities are offered throughout the year to help reduce the isolation that many family caregivers experience.
Caregiver recognition Gala
Free conferences, open to everyone at various locations throughout the year.
- Managing stress and anxiety
- Navigating the system
- Using dreams as a tool for well-being
Online conferences :
The online presentation «Navigating The System» is aimed at helping caregivers understand the range of services available to seniors through the CLSCs, as well as the current role and functioning of their home care services. The goal is to help caregivers get the support they need by rendering CLSC resources more accessible and by informing them of how and where to access other resources when necessary. Watch it online now!
Upcoming conferences :
Navigating the system / Thursday, April 4 from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Centre Marcel-Giroux, 4501 Av Bannantyne, Verdun, Verdunoise room. In collaboration with Groupes des Aidants de Sud-Ouest.
Navigating the system / Wednesday, April 10th from 9 :30 to 11 :30 a.m.
Centre sportif Dollard-St-Laurent, 707, 75e Avenue, LaSalle, room 123. In collaboration with Groupes des Aidants de Sud-Ouest
The role of caregiver and its impacts / Wednesday April 24 from 7 to 9 p.m.
Ahuntsic Library, 10300 Lajeunesse. In collaboration with La Pause-Café™Alzheimer.
Managing stress and anxiety / Tuesday, April 30th from 1 to 3 p.m.
Cartierville Library, 5900 rue de Salaberry. In collaboration with La Pause-Café™Alzheimer.
The Legal Information Clinic offers up to three private sessions with volunteer lawyers and notaries (by appointment only). The service provides information on all types of legal issues and will refer you if your situation requires legal action.
Pro Bono Studients Canada Legal Information
A supervised team of law-student volunteers is also available to research and answer your legal questions thanks to an agreement with Pro Bono Student Canada.
Feeling overwhelmed? – Tests
Take the tests below to assess your level of risk for caregiver burnout so that you can seek help before it happens. If your risk seems high, contact us for help and/or referral or inform your health care provider.
How am I feeling? Download the test
Translated from pages 13-14 of the « Guide d’accompagnement à l’intention des proches aidants du Conseil des aînés et des retraités de la MRC des Appalaches. »
Translated from pages 6-7 of « Être aidant pas si évident – Guide de prévention de l’épuisement pour les aidants naturels.»
The support to family caregivers program offers services and tools to support caregivers on site at their workplace. This service also helps employers reduce the financial and human impact of caregiving in their workplaces. The services include confidential surveys aimed at employees, personalised consultations with employers, as well as conferences and information responding to caregiver’s needs.
Do you regularly help someone? Find out more about our services.
You can contact us at 514 866-9941, ext. 226 or by completing the form below.