The Heart of the Caregiver® as Support Group Curriculum
Whether you represent a church, hospital, community center, a disease or disability association, care center or service – hosting opportunities for the families you serve to connect and share is an important way for you to recognize and support them. Support groups can be one of those opportunities, but it is important to offer leadership and curriculum to keep participants encouraged, inspired and coming back for more.
How it Works:
The Heart of the Caregiver® is a 10-week course developed to take caregivers from feeling overwhelmed to being overjoyed. Caregivers will come to see themselves, their situation and the person they are caring for in a whole new way – through the light of God’s amazing love. The course has been taught at churches, community centers, workshops and retreats for the last five years. Numerous testimonials attest to its transformational power.
The Course Provides:
A workbook for small group discussion as well as personal study and reflection; (Download a sample chapter)
- A simple leader’s guide to help establish a safe and secure setting, provide ideas and inspiration for leading discussions, tools for encouraging participation and promotional ideas;
- Teaching videos for each chapter. Purchase teaching videos and leader’s guide together here. And now there is a follow up study, as well – The Peaceful Caregiver®.
- Weekly encouragement and inspiration sent directly to participant’s inbox.
- Five Steps to Transformation Worksheet to help summarize the course and develop an action plan for transformation.
The goal of the course is to go from trying to care out of self, to caring out of the love and knowledge of God.
The course is applicable to anyone caring for someone with disabilities, chronic illness, age-related issues and/or mental illness. The course is also appropriate for men and women of any age.
About the Author:
Learn more about Mary Tutterow
In addition to small group curriculum, The Heart of the Caregiver® offers numerous ways for caregivers to connect, share and grow during this often difficult time. If you are in need of immediate help, you can check out our Comfort and Support page and get Prayer Support by clicking here.
Or you can Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter where you will learn about methods and tools to serve this huge area of family ministry – curriculum, online support, prayer rooms, workshops, retreats and more.
There is a National Caregiver Crisis emerging.
More than 65 million people, 29% of the U.S. population, provide care for a chronically ill, disabled, or aged family member or friend during any given year and spend an average of 20 hours per week providing care for their loved one. (Caregiving in the United States; National Alliance for Caregiving in collaboration with AARP; November 2009)
Caring for those who are caring for others is an exploding new area for community concern. There’s statistical proof that caregivers tend to neglect their own spiritual, emotional and physical health, suffer stress levels equal with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), experience depressionand have increased mortality risk. Men, women, even children are affected. And the numbers are on the rise as 77 million Baby Boomers turn 65 and older, and developmental disabilities now affect 1 in 7 children.
National Alliance for Caregiving and Evercare. 2006.
 Zarit, S. (2006). Assessment of Family Caregivers: A Research Perspective
 New England Journal of Medicine, Feb. 16, 2006
Check out my articles on CareLeader:
Building relationships with families touched by chronic illness and disability