In this course, caregivers develop a wealth of self-care tools to reduce personal stress, change negative self-talk, communicate their needs to family members and healthcare or service providers, communicate effectively in challenging situations, recognize the messages in their emotions, deal with difficult feelings, and make tough caregiving decisions. Class participants also receive a copy of The Caregiver Helpbook, developed specifically for the class.
Program Origins and Development
Powerful Tools for Caregivers (PTC) has been offered since 1998. All materials were developed over 3 years of pilot testing, refinement, and evaluative research to assess the program’s effectiveness. There are over 4,000 Class Leaders in 41 U.S. states, and in Canada and Korea. Since the program’s inception, Powerful Tools for Caregivers materials have reached over 70,000 caregivers.
PTC is based on the highly successful Chronic Disease Self-Management Program developed by Dr. Kate Lorig and her colleagues at Stanford University. PTC is a national program sustained by extensive collaborations with community-based organizations
Research and Outcomes
In the years since the program began, a great deal of research, evaluation and revision has been done to ensure its continued value and success. The 6-week PTC class has been shown to have a positive impact on caregiver health for a diverse group of caregivers including rural, ethnic minorities, adult children of aging parents, well-spouses/partners, caregivers at differing stages in their caregiving role, living situations, financial and educational backgrounds. Data from class participant evaluations indicates the PTC program significantly improves:
- Self-Care Behaviors: (increased exercise, use of relaxation techniques and medical check ups.)
- Management of Emotions: (reduced guilt, anger, and depression.)
- Self-efficacy (increased confidence in coping with caregiving demands.)
- Use of Community Resources: (increased utilization of community services.)
This new offering at ELM is made possible with the support of Cobb Senior Services’ Retired Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP) and the Atlanta Regional Commission. During week seven, an additional class on Assistive Technology has been added following the completion of the Powerful Tools series. Experience devices that make life easier in this interactive seminar on Assistive Technology. Learn about the Cobb Senior Services’ AT Lab, a community resource which displays over 100 technology items to help in the home, in the car, at work, and more!
For more information on the Powerful Tools program, please visit https://www.powerfultoolsforcaregivers.org/ or contact Amy Woodell at Cobb Senior Services 770-528-5351.