Jed A. Levine
Executive Vice President, Director of
Programs & Services
We say that to raise a child, “it takes a village.” And this is no less true when caring for someone with a progressive, long term illness. But today, this is more challenging than ever. Families are smaller and more mobile than in previous generations and family members may live far from siblings and parents. Typically, this leaves the responsibility for care of an aging parent, spouse or partner with dementia to a primary caregiver who can get quickly overwhelmed. As the disease progresses, the person with dementia is less able to independently manage the activities of daily living – eating, bathing, dressing – and behavioral symptoms become harder to manage. Our hope is that, before things get out of hand, the caregiver remembers one of CaringKind’s key messages: “You cannot do this alone.”
Medical science remains limited in its ability to treat Alzheimer’s and related disorders. We know that, in the absence of an effective therapy, the best treatment is good care. And that is CaringKind’s role. We are the only organization with over 30 years of experience providing dementia-specific patient and family education, care and support in multiple languages, throughout the continuum of the disease. Our staff creates a community where dementia caregivers feel welcome and safe. In this environment, they are open to learning the most effective way to care for an individual with a progressive dementia. We are, at CaringKind, the village that caregivers need.
We hope our clients will start by calling our 24-hour Helpline Specialists, who provide information, guidance and hope. Clients may be directed to a social worker, who will help each caregiver navigate the confusing and complex system of social and medical organizations and resources. Social workers ensure that the person with dementia is enrolled in the MedicAlert® NYC Wanderer’s Safety Program and that, if appropriate, they enroll in our Early Stage programs.
These and other CaringKind programs and services are enhanced and supported by over 200 community partners and hundreds of volunteers including our Support Group leaders. The success of our outreach effort depends on the strong, mutually beneficial relationships cultivated with community leaders and persons of influence in the Latino, African American, Chinese, LGBT, Orthodox Jewish and healthcare communities. Our comprehensive database provides access to information and resources including diagnostic centers, adult day care programs, home care providers, residential care, hospice, legal and financial resources and so much more.
Research and advocacy remain an important part of CaringKind’s mission. We work closely with all the major research and treatment centers, and with partners in advocacy like LiveON NY and AARP who help us advocate for services on the local and state level. LEAD (Leaders Engaged on Alzheimer’s Disease) Coalition and USAgainstAlzheimer’s help us advocate for increased funding for research, care and support on the federal level.
You can see, it takes a village. Dementia caregiving is hard, but with CaringKind, you are not alone. If you or someone you know needs help, please reach out today.
Call the 24-hour Helpline at 646-744-2900 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will welcome you to the CaringKind village.