Providing Care for Latino Caregivers in Los Angeles

The USC Family Caregiver Support Center, AARP, and 211 LA collaborate to give Latino caregivers in Los Angeles County the support they need.

The USC Family Caregiver Support Center is teaming up with AARP and 211 LA to provide support for Latino caregivers in Los Angeles County. The Helping the Helper (Ayudando a Quien Ayuda) program helps caregivers find support services in their communities ranging from training and information sessions to individual consultations.

The USC Family Caregiver Support Center plays a role in the program by providing follow-up calls to individuals who call 211 interested in the program. A follow-up call is then made by the USC Family Caregiver Support Center to assess caregiver needs and provide supportive services that may include information, individual consultations, respite, education, and training to help maintain the care recipient’s independence and abilities while also helping caregivers care for themselves and manage their own well-being. All of the services provide bilingual communication as well.

“We are thrilled to be a part of this partnership with AARP and 211 to link Spanish speaking families to our comprehensive services for family caregivers,” said Donna Benton, director of the USC Family Caregiver Support Center. “We know that there is an abundance of information out there, and sometimes you just need an experienced guide. The call to 211 is the first step to making the caregiving journey smoother.”

Two of the biggest concerns for caregivers involve emotional and financial support. In a recent survey of registered California voters 40 years old and over, AARP found that 68 percent of current and former caregivers say they feel stressed emotionally due to their caregiving responsibilities. Even more, 60 percent say they have worked while providing care, and 67 percent have used their own money to provide care – most commonly on transportation, assistive technology or home modifications.

“Caring for a loved one can be emotionally and financially challenging, and we want Angelenos to know they are not alone,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti in an AARP press release announcing the launch of the program. “Helping the Helper is an incredible resource that provides caregivers with training on how to fulfill that role as they balance other responsibilities in their daily lives.”

The USC Family Caregiver Support Center’s involvement in Helping the Helper (Ayudando a Quien Ayuda) will help with the next major steps necessary for providing support for Latino caregivers in Los Angeles County. The program will offer the bilingual support that caregivers need in order to effectively take care of their loved ones as well as their own mental health.

Helping the Helper serves communities in the southeastern area of Los Angeles County. The area’s Latino population is continuously growing and is projected to nearly double by 2030,

when more than 740,000 Latinos in Los Angeles will be over age 65. If individuals live outside the service area, 211 LA helps them find information and resources available across Los Angeles County as well.

For more information about Helping the Helpers (Ayudando a Quien Ayuda), visit aarp.org/helpingthehelper for English or aarp.org/ayudandoaquienayuda for Spanish.