The term caregivers refers to the provision of assistance to another person who is ill, disabled, or needs help with daily activities. It often requires attention to the physical, mental, social, and psychological needs and well-being of both the caregivers and the person requiring care.
Caregiving responsibilities will touch almost all of us at some point in our lives. With an aging population and with many caring for ill and disabled children and young adults, an increasing number of people are family caregivers.
In addition, research from the National Alliance for Caregiving (NAC) in partnership with Caring Across Generations highlights the challenges facing working parents who are providing intergenerational care. Findings indicate that more than 11 million Americans (more than a quarter of all caregivers) are caring for an adult family member due to health needs or disability, while also caring for children at home. This group has become known as the sandwich generation because they are effectively "sandwiched" between both aging parents and children (who all may require financial, physical, and emotional support).
The issue of caregiving is relevant and timely to those employed in libraries today. The COVID-19 pandemic is complicating matters of care for families. It has forced many schools to close and caused those who have not lost their jobs, to work from home. Those who are parents are attempting to work as employees and teachers as well as caregivers.
At some point in a library workers’ career, he or she will be a caregiver, will work with someone who is a caregiver or will supervise a caregiver. Understanding the challenges of this role will become critical to most library staff. On January 16, 2008, the ALA Council recognized the responsibility of libraries to help all employees that are family caregivers through adoption of a resolution in support of Women as Caregivers in the Workforce.
Members of the American Library Association’s (ALA) Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship (COSWL) have gathered resources to help caregivers. The information and links presented on this website are intended to be of use for both caregivers and those who supervise or work with someone who is a caregiver. The list does not seek to be comprehensive. Those who can share additional links or materials are encouraged to contact email@example.com .
- National Caregiver's Library
- Next Step In Care
- 5 Facts About Family Caregivers
- Family Caregiving from the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP)
- Mesothelioma Caregivers
- Family Caregiver Toolbox
- Caregiver Support Services
- ALA-APA Wellness: Resources for Parents
- Alzheimer’s Association
- American Association for Caregiver Education
- Caring.Com Caregiving Resource Center
- Family Caregiver Alliance
- National Alliance for Caregiving
- 25 Organizations that Take Care of Caregivers
- 50 Resources for Dementia and Alzheimer’s Patients and their Caregivers
- Caregiver Stress Fact Sheet
- Caregiving at Home
- Caring for Yourself When Caring for Another
- Caring for Yourself While Caring for Others
- Mayo Clinic Stress Management
- Mesothelioma & Asbestos Awareness Center Caregiver Support
- Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance
- Preventing Caregiver Burnout
- Strategies for Long-Distance Caregivers published by Simmons University School of Nursing
- Support for Caregivers of Lung Cancer Patients
- Employer Best Practices for Workers with Caregiving Responsibilities
- Supporting Caregivers in the Workplace: A Practical Guide for Employers
- The Caring Company
- Digital Tools and Solutions for Caregivers: An Employer's Guide
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Caregiving
- Medicare Resources for Caregivers
- Caregiver Action Network
- National Family Caregiver Support Program (OAA Title IIIE)
- USA.gov Caregiver Resources
- VA Caregiver Support
- U.S. National Library of Medicine - Medline Plus Caregiver Resources
- U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
- Enforcement Guidance: Unlawful Disparate Treatment of Workers with Caregiving Responsibilities
From Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
- U.S. Department of Labor Family and Medical Leave Act
- University of Connecticut Health Center Library Resources
- National Rehabilitation Information Center
- Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) Library Services to an Aging Population
Webinars and Training
- Dementia Society of America Free Online Training
- How Employers Can Support Library Workers Who Are Caregivers During COVID-19
Webinar held Feb. 3, 2021
- Center for Caregiving Research, Education and Policy (University of Pittsburgh)
- Caregiver Support Groups Offer Valuable Help
- Compassion Fatigue: When Caregivers Go Beyond Burnout
- Practicing Patience, Empathy, and Compassion as a Caregiver
- Simple Ways to Care with Empathy
- How Empathy Can Be a Gateway to Caregiver Burnout
- ALA-APA Wellness: Resources for Coping with Grief
- Find a Licensed Professional Counselor in Your Area
- The Therapy Directory is a website and online service from Psychology Today that can assist you in finding a counselor.
This page is maintained by the ALA Office for Human Resource Development and Recruitment (HRDR) on behalf of the ALA Committee on the Status of Women in Librarianship (COSWL). For questions or comments, or to suggest additional resources, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.