Larry is a North Dakota caregiver who takes care of his wife with multiple sclerosis, every day, 24 hours a day. He does the cooking, bathing, and other necessary tasks that allow Larry and his wife to stay at home rather than move away from their homestead. It’s a tough job, but for Larry and the other 62,100 North Dakota caregivers, it’s a labor of love. That is why AARP is fighting for caregivers like Larry.
More than 15 AARP volunteers attended the May meeting of the legislature’s Interim Human Services Committee to show their support for North Dakota family caregivers.
November marked National Family Caregivers Month, a time to recognize the 40 million Americans – more than 61,000 from North Dakota – who help older parents, spouses, and other loved ones live independently at home, where they want to be. The unpaid care they provide – managing medications, cooking meals, driving to appointments, performing complex medical tasks and more – is valued at $860 million in North Dakota alone.
AARP North Dakota presented a wrap-up report on the 2015 North Dakota Legislature in Fargo, Grand Forks, Minot, Bismarck, Dickinson and Williston in mid-May.
More than 109,000 people in North Dakota spend part of their day taking care of family and loved ones, but most don’t think of themselves as caregivers. The meals fixed for Mom and Dad, the visits to the doctor – that help and other assistance would cost $830 million if someone had to be hired to do it.
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