Recent decades have brought significant changes in family form and function, as well as new service delivery models that promote health and well-being for people with various disabilities within their homes and communities. Nevertheless, providing care to family members continues to be part of family life. Caregiving and care sharing take place across the life course and involve various configurations. Although there are similarities, families have different needs and experiences of care depending on the care giving situation, life course issues, and unique personal history. Since caregiving can involve multiple parties— family members, friends, state programs and services, etc. — using multiple methods and services, people may feel they need more insights into current caregiving.
In Caregiving and Care Sharing: A Life Course Perspective, the authors highlight the experience of providing care in several different family situations. This book not only serves as a guide to assist those caring for older adults, but also examines the experiences of older caregivers caring for younger adults, as older parents care for adult children with intellectual and psychiatric conditions, or when grandparents are raising their grandchildren. The caregiving needs of veterans are also addressed.
As the number of older adults rises, the diversity of the population will also increase. The concept of care sharing indicates that care provision is not a solitary task. It implies that professionals are part of a caregiving collective—joining with families to promote functioning of those who require care. The chapters in this book identify various experiences of care and provide an opportunity for students and practitioners to develop their own model as professionals who will be part of a caregiving collective. The chapters include:
- Introduction to Care Provision
- Changing Families
- Theory for Care: Integrating Your Caregiving Model
- Caring for Older Adults: Functional Capacity and Health Status
- Disability through the Life Course
- Care Provision and Severe Mental Illness
- Returning Veterans
- Caregiving Model for People with HIV/AIDS
- Grandparents Raising Grandchildren
- Caregiving with Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Questioning Clients
- Immigrant Families: Caregiving Transitions
- Caregiving and Care Sharing: The Social Environment of Family Life
Caregiving and Care Sharing links evolving social work theory with the changing demographics of caregiving. It is an essential guide for social workers in all fields. As the authors write:
Given the number of changes in family life over the last few decades, today’s social work practitioners in all types of roles will work with caregiving families. Regardless of your career path, you will most likely have some involvement with families that face challenges in caring for someone who has limitations in functioning. We hope the contents of and the experiences of the families in the book with help you understand caregiving families in your practice area.