November is National Family Caregivers Month, and North Star Community Services would like to recognize and celebrate the countless family caregivers who sacrifice and put the needs of their loved ones first. Everyday 41 million Americans perform 34 billion hours of essential, unpaid support (AARP) for someone with chronic or disabling health concerns as a family, or “informal” caregiver. They could be caring for a child with a disability, a family member with a brain injury, an elderly neighbor, or a parent or grandparent with Alzheimer’s. It might be part-time, or a “24/7” commitment, a few years or even a lifetime, but these caregivers provide eighty percent of long-term care in our country.

Being a caregiver is not easy, and we appreciate how challenging, emotionally draining, and thankless it can sometimes be. But you exemplify the spirit of love, compassion, and dedication, and your care and support are the main reason that your loved one can maintain as much independence and health as possible. Family caregivers are truly one of the cornerstones of our community, and they should be supported and celebrated not only in November, but all year long. Thank you!