Carly Mesavitz and Victoria Puzo led this workshop and highlighted one of the important parts of a cancer’s patient’s life: the role of the caregiver. Caregivers often forget that in order for them to be there for the patient, they need to take care of themselves. This session proved to be incredibly informative as they introduced the caregiver’s bill of rights.
Representing CancerCare, both Carly and Victoria explained the types of support they offer. CancerCare is the leading national organization dedicated to providing free, professional support services including counseling, support groups, educational workshops, as well as publications and financial assistance to anyone affected by cancer. All CancerCare services are provided by oncology social workers and world-leading cancer experts.
This session provided helpful tips on how to incorporate taking care of oneself, as a caregiver, while also being there for their loved one. Small things like taking an extra five minutes in the shower as a reward or going for a 10 minute walk would help ease the stress and reward oneself for their dedication as a caregiver.
The bill of amendments helped remind the caregivers that they still needed and owed to take care of themselves as well. The session was filled with loved ones sharing their perspectives as they let out their feelings on going through a hard time. The speakers highlighted how to assess the caregiver’s stress, special considerations when caring for a young adult, practical tools for coping with caregiving, distribute resources and information, and information surrounding how to best support your loved one with cancer.
A beautiful moment happened when the attendees shared their common frustrations that happened as they are caring for someone and they found support from one another knowing that they are not alone. CancerCare provides an immense amount of help and with the informative session provided by the speakers, it is by no doubt an important resource.