Support for Caregivers During the COVID-19 Pandemic
23-Mar-2020 - Saskatoon Saskatchewan
The SFFA has prepared detailed information regarding Caregiver support during the COVID-19 pandemic. Read this item for complete details.
Where can you access accurate information about COVID-19?
Learn about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and actions being taken to protect the health of Saskatchewan residents. https://www.saskatchewan.ca/government/health-care-administration-and-provider-resources/treatment-procedures-and-guidelines/emerging-public-health-issues/2019-novel-coronavirus
Planning for your family
Your family is being impacted by COVID-19 with the closure of schools and some day cares. You are most likely trying to figure out a plan for your household as you consider how you are going to manage without knowing what the future holds. These are stressful times, but it is important for you to know you are not alone. Your child’s caseworker or Out of Home Care worker (Resource Worker) are available to answer questions and help you plan, but now is also the time to rely on your support network.
Question: How will you manage if?
You are not able to go out into the community due to concerns about your age or health concerns that put you or a member of your household at greater risk of infection.
You or a member of your household has to self-isolate.
You or someone in your household becomes sick.
Answer: Create a Household Action Plan
It is essential to follow preventative measures avoid contact with others who have COVID-19 symptoms and have travelled outside Canada; or were exposed to someone who has confirmed COVID-19. COVID-19 has created a unique situation. Sometimes it is hard to ask for help but this is a time for people to come together and support one another.
Building your plan with your support network:
Set up a time to connect with household members and your support network to discuss what the needs of your household are.
Your support network includes, but is not limited to, your child’s caseworker, your kinship or foster care support worker, other professionals, relatives, friends, local caregiver support groups, spiritual and cultural communities.
Create a calendar and plan for immediate AND future needs.
Here are some examples of how your support network can help you:
Pick up groceries, prescriptions, household items and help with chores
Provide you with a break/relief/child care
Assist with errands such as a vehicle repair or if you have a personal appointment
Provide a mental health break – someone to talk to during this stressful time
Immediately notify the child’s caseworker if you have COVID-19 symptoms and have travelled outside Canada; or were exposed to someone who has confirmed COVID-19; remain home for 14 days and call Health Link 811 for instructions.
If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and are planning to go to the hospital or Medi Clinic, call ahead to notify them of potential risk.
Prescriptions: Does your pharmacy deliver? Can someone from your support network pick up your prescriptions?
Some pharmacies are opening early or staying open later for seniors or customers who need assistance to decrease exposure risk.
Government of Canada’s public service announcements about COVID-19 are available in Indigenous languages.
LINK: Public Service Announcements
Talk to your child’s caseworker or Out of Home Care worker (Resource Worker) if you are struggling financially due to COVID-19
Service Canada - Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits provides up to 15 weeks of income replacement and is available to eligible claimants who are unable to work because of illness, injury or quarantine, to allow them time to restore their health and return to work. Canadians quarantined can apply for Employment Insurance (EI) sickness benefits due to COVID-19.
LINK: Service Canada (EI Claims)
https://www.canada.ca/en/emplo yment-socialdevelopment/corporate/notices/c oronavirus.html
Check your local grocery store or restaurant for home delivery
When possible order online for delivery or consider ordering online and go to store for car pick up
There are many grocery stores in urban centres including Superstore, Save-On-Foods and Walmart that have order online and car pick up. Check online for locations.
Some grocery stores are opening early or staying open later for seniors only shopping hours to decrease exposure risk.
Ask someone from your support network to pick up groceries for you
Schools and some day cares are closed... Now What?
Check with your child/youth’s school to see what or if they have a plan for ongoing education.
Check out free education resources, virtual museums, virtual field trips, fun activities and more online. For example, Scholastic.com
Look online for parent/caregiver support groups. Many groups are sharing ideas and resources.
Make a plan with your support network for childcare.
LINK: Scholastic Learn at Home
It seems like almost everywhere you turn the focus is on COVID19.
You are not alone as families attempt to navigate all the information about COVID-19 and try to plan for the unknown. Information keeps changing and it is hard to keep up.
The world around us can feel scary for adults and children.
It is important to reach out if you are struggling and be aware of how the children/youth in your home are coping.
The Saskatchewan Foster Families Association (SFFA)is also here to support you. On weekends, and after hours you may reach out to the SFFA by calling 306.975.1580. An on call staff will be able to assist you.
If you need support that is more urgent after business hours call Mobile Crisis
LINK: Helping children and teens cope with stressful public events.
LINK: Caring for Kids: A website designed by Canadian paediatricians to provide caregivers with information about their child’s health and well-being.
Saskatchewan Foster Families Association:
La Ronge 24-Hour Crisis Line 306-425-4090
Prince Albert Mobile Crisis 306-764-1011
Regina Mobile Crisis Services 306-757-0127
Saskatoon Mobile Crisis Service 306-933-6200
Southwest Crisis Services 1-800-567-3334