OPERATION FAMILY CAREGIVER
Operation Family Caregiver coaches the families of returning service members and veterans to manage the difficulties they face when they come home. OFC is a personalized program, tailored specifically to the struggles of each family. Through proven methods, the program teaches military families how best to navigate their challenges, resulting in stronger and healthier families. Learn more about how OFC helps create strong and healthy families.
Returning home from war is hard. The transition to civilian life is jarring, and those with injuries – whether psychological or physical – lean heavily on loved ones for help. Young spouses and aging parents are taking care of America’s wounded warriors – in many cases, at the expense of their own health and well-being. This huge job ranges from managing prescriptions and doctor’s appointments to bathing, dressing, and feeding someone who can no longer do these things himself. Caring family members perform acts of heroism everyday.
Taking all of this on can be a burden, but many family members hesitate to ask for help. Some are concerned about their privacy or ashamed to admit they are overwhelmed. Many are just too busy to take care of anything but their family’s most basic needs. While government and community organizations offer many services for returning service members and veterans, those caring for them receive very little support. The programs that do exist for military families focus mostly on meeting today’s needs – for food, shelter, work – and less on helping families lay a strong foundation so they can meet their own needs over the long term.
Operation Family Caregiver is a personalized program to help the families of newly returning service members and veterans adjust to the “new normal” by coping more effectively with problems they never imagined. It offers specially trained coaches to help military families learn how to manage their challenges. Supported by Johnson & Johnson, Operation Family Caregiver is a free and confidential program of the Rosalynn Carter Institute for Caregiving. It is administered by community-based organizations, not the military, and can be done in person or by phone/Skype.
America has been at war for longer than ever before, resulting in more military caregivers who need more support. Since 9/11, more than 2.5 million service members have served in the global war on terrorism. About 50,000 have been seriously wounded in action, and an estimated 1 in 5 return with posttraumatic stress or major depression. Nearly two-thirds of those recently deployed went to war before their 29th birthdays; when they return, many still have their entire lives ahead of them, and a lifetime of obstacles to overcome.
Operation Family Caregiver helps the families of these returning service members and veterans learn how to overcome these obstacles. Caregivers who have completed the program are more satisfied with their lives, have fewer health complaints, and are generally more prepared to take care of their families. The strength of our military is legendary, but at the heart of our military is a strong family structure. Operation Family Caregiver helps create strong and healthy families.