Senior and young holding handsThere are 42 million family caregivers in America and about 20 percent of them are Latinos.

In a survey by the National Alliance for Caregiving, Blacks and Hispanics were more likely than non-Hispanic Whites or Asians to cite caregiving as a financial hardship.

“Hispanics tend to live in close proximity of family and maintain very close family ties, so they tend to be natural caregivers,” said Roberto Rey, AARP Colorado director of multicultural outreach. “That is why it is so important that we reach this group and help them find resources in the community.”

To get the conversation started, the Latino Community Foundation of Colorado and the Rose Community Foundation, along with AARP Colorado, are hosting “Telling Our Story,” the foundation’s annual forum on Oct. 7 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. A reception will follow the program at the Denver Art Museum.

The Telling Our Story forum engages visionaries in a day-long, thought-provoking program of educational sessions with dynamic speakers and expert panels. Speakers include Dr. William A. Vega, provost professor and executive director of the Edward R. Roybal Institute on Aging at the University of Southern California. The luncheon keynote address will be delivered by Dr. Richard H. Carmona, 17th Surgeon General of the United States and distinguished professor at the University of Arizona.

“We need to work on multiple ways to help family caregivers help the ones they love,” Rey said. “Family caregivers provide the vast majority of care to older people who need help with daily tasks. AARP is committed to finding ways to assist family caregivers within the Latino community, as well as the community as a whole.”

There are more than 600,000 family caregivers in Colorado and a significant number of them are Hispanic.

Photo courtesy of iStockphoto.com/chaiyon021

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