Recreation Therapy and Family Caregivers
May 10, 2011
Hosted by Dr. Gordon Atherley
Amy MacFarlane is Founder and CEO of Recreational Respite Inc, www.recrespite.com, which provides creative living and innovative care services. She explains recreation therapy and talks about the challenges that it helps with. She describes the special needs and health conditions for which she recommends recreation therapy. She explains why and how recreation therapy helps persons and their family caregivers meet the challenges that these conditions create. She describes some real-life examples. She talks about organizing recreation therapy for persons living at home alone, with their families, or in a care facility. For these various situations, she explains how recreation therapy helps family caregivers. She explains how recreation therapy helps aging at home, a policy favoured by governments. She says what she would like to see done to extend, expand and increase funding for recreation therapy. She explains what family caregivers can do to help promote recreation therapy.
Family Caregivers Unite!
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Family caregivers are the people who provide care to partners, parents, children, brothers, sisters, cousins, friends, neighbors and even co-workers. They are the people who provide care when everyone else has gone home. They are the people who organize the functioning of the home for the person with special needs, and for the family as a whole. They are the coordinators of care, the managers of appointments, the preventers of loneliness, and the makers of decisions even to the point of Power of Attorney. And they are so often people who themselves are burdened with their own health challenges and who may be in only marginally better health than the persons to whom they are providing family caregiving.
Dr. Gordon Atherley
Dr Gordon Atherley holds the British equivalent of the Canadian PhD and MD degrees, and LLD, Honoris Causa, from Canada’s Simon Fraser University. His awards include Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, UK. His medical specialties are occupational medicine and public health.
As first President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, the Canadian equivalent of the US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, he led the creation of Canada’s electronic information service in occupational health and safety, now used in more than 40 countries.
In academia, he held senior, tenured, full-time positions, including departmental chair, in university faculties of physics, engineering, and medicine. He is the author of a textbook and numerous articles and publications.
Since retiring from medical practice, he’s built up Greyhead Associates, which critically researches the safety, effectiveness and fairness of health services for persons with special needs.
Through Virtual Care International, a company of which he’s President, he’s involved in providing sensible technology to family caregivers to help them with their responsibilities, workloads, and concerns.
Now an activist, he urges family caregivers to unite because, more and more, it’s not just their families who depend on them, it’s also the healthcare system as a whole, as it struggles to meet more and more needs of more and more people.