PSC Receives Grant to Develop New Caregiver Program

iris-kimbrough-mary-klinefelter-fred-mcewen-colleen-schueneman-terri-winfree-psc-082009

Pictured from left to right: Iris Kimbrough, Mary Klinefelter, Fred McEwen, Colleen A. Schueneman, and Terri Winfree. (PHOTO SUPPLIED)

Chicago Heights, IL–(ENEWSPF)– The number of Americans who will need a caregiver is projected to grow at a record pace. According to the U.S. Census, 12.7 percent of the Chicago south suburbs’ population is aged 64 and older with many communities surpassing 15 percent. To address the need for trained caregivers, Prairie State College (PSC) is developing a Geriatric Home Caregiver program.

To help fund this new initiative, PSC is the recipient of a $20,000 grant funded by the MetLife Foundation and managed by the Caregiving Project for Older Americans, a project housed within the International Longevity Center-USA (ILC-USA).

“The Geriatric Home Caregiver Program at PSC will provide much needed service to several groups of people in our communities,” said Iris Kimbrough, coordinator of career training. “Elders will benefit from trained, compassionate caregivers; families will benefit from skills training and support services; and area residents looking for a rewarding career in a growing field will receive the education and hands-on experience to succeed.”

The college will offer a vocational certificate program to provide skills training for basic elder care within a client’s home or an outside facility. This includes assisting with physical needs and helping the patient maintain functional independence.

Family caregivers also will have the opportunity to participate in any combination of workshops and courses that most closely match their needs to care for their loved one. According to the National Family Caregivers Association, more than 50 million people provide care for a chronically ill, disabled, or aged family member or friend during any given year.

The curriculum for the Geriatric Home Caregiver program will be developed by registered nurses with input from area social service agencies. The program will promote skill growth, advance the quality of care, and provide opportunities for career development.

For more information about this new program, contact Kimbrough at (708) 709-7866 or [email protected].