- Written by Lynne Feldman
- Published: 21 March 2019
If there’s one thing everyone wants, it’s a sense of belonging. The Adult Family Care (AFC) program at LifePath helps enable adults of all ages to belong to a community, and more importantly, to a family.
Specifically, AFC helps adults age 16 or older who—because of medical, physical, cognitive, or mental health conditions—cannot safely live alone. Family members or individuals wanting to care for a person in need can become an AFC caregiver. They are compensated for their care with a tax-exempt stipend and room and board.
Families of all sorts make wonderful caregivers. “Our families range from single people, couples, to families with children,” explains Janet Calcari, AFC Program Director, “and our clients range from 16 to 98 years old, with all kinds of diagnoses and all kinds of needs.”
Some families come pre-made: the parent of an adult child with a developmental disability, the child of a parent with a physical disability, or a friend of someone who has a medical condition may qualify to become a caregiver. Other homes are created by matching individuals or families who wish to open their homes and become caregivers with someone in need.
“We support the client and the caregiver as much as they need,” says Calcari. Each caregiver is paired with a nurse and a care manager, who are there as advocates, providing information and education to caregivers to ensure the caregiver has a proper understanding of the needs of the person in their care. In addition to monthly visits, nurses and care managers are always available by phone and for crisis visits.