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Reducing the Stress of Caring for Family Members

“There are only four kinds of people in the world- those who have been caregivers, those who are caregivers, those who will be caregivers and those who will need caregivers.”
-Rosalynn Carter

 Caregiving in Washoe County

The Community Foundation’s Caregiver Support Initiative is aimed at addressing the needs of unpaid family caregivers to seniors in Washoe County. As our community continues to age, it is crucial that we address the needs of the caregivers who play the important role of keeping our seniors healthy and happy.  Caregivers are often overlooked, but through this initiative, we have listened to, learned from, and worked with caregivers to help create tools to alleviate some of the stress that caregiving brings. Over the last year, the Caregiver Support Initiative created an online resource database and a caregiver guidebook. Both these aids are now available for free in our community!


WashoeCaregivers.org is the most extensive resource database our community has for caregivers and seniors. It lists over 300 useful community and national resources that are easily searchable and broken up into categories.

In addition to connecting caregivers with local resources, WashoeCaregivers.org also provides information about common questions that caregivers have, downloadable documents that caregivers may need, and a community blog for caregivers to share their personal experiences. The site is designed to be easy to navigate for all ages and has been tested by local caregivers. This resource database will be kept up-to-date and the information for each resource will be verified every six months.

Washoe Caregivers Guidebook

The free Washoe Caregivers guidebook is designed to benefit first-time caregivers as they begin their caregiving journey. This guidebook has been written by experts and caregivers in the Reno area and covers topics involved in caregiving. Information about self-care for the caregiver, planning (financial and legal), home safety, techniques for communicating with health care professionals, and more are written in a personal, easy-to-follow style.

Washoe Caregivers: Your Guide to the Basics of Beginning Care, is FREE and will be available at hospitals, nonprofits, community centers, and online. To access the guidebook, visit WashoeCaregivers.org/Important-Documents for a downloadable version or visit the Community Foundation to pick up a printed version.

Thanks to a generous gift from Nature’s Bakery, a Spanish language version of Washoe Caregivers guidebook is available.

oliverio.n-t-bella2-closerBoth the resource database and the guidebook are now available! We hope caregivers in our community will benefit greatly from these tools.

Everything we do is a service of love that needs to be supported.




Family Caregiver Email Discussion Group

Connect with other family caregivers. Share advice and ask each other questions about caregiving.
To register as a member: click here.

Let’s say you are trying to get better at self-care, but don’t know how to begin. Send an email and ask, “How can I take time for myself without feeling guilty?”

Members of the group can respond to your question. When another member responds to your question, you will simply receive a response through your email. You can also share experiences and answer questions of other members in the group.

The Community Foundation moderates each message to ensure the highest quality of experience for each member. Once your question has been approved, it will be visible to the group.

If you have any questions, please contact Luiza Benisano at lbenisano@nevadafund.org or call the Community Foundation at 775-333-5499.

Click here for detailed instructions on the discussion group.

Caregiver Employee Toolkit

Supporting Caregivers is Good Business.

60% of family caregivers work fulltime and 19% of family caregivers in Washoe County have major debt due to caregiving. We created the Caregiver Employee Toolkit to support working caregivers and demonstrate the impact of caregiving on the workforce. When caregivers are supported businesses benefit too. Our goal is to reach 50 businesses this year and educate human resource personnel on they can accommodate their caregiver employees. You can help us by sharing the toolkit and introducing us to human resource personnel you know.

Caregiving Blog

Posts on washoecaregivers.org written for the website by local caregivers and professionals in caregiving, senior health, or social services.

Elder Abuse During the Time of COVID-19 by Luiza Benisano, Jean Myles, Lora Myles and William Palmer

Community Foundation 2019 Impact Report on the Caregiver Support Initiative

Mental Health for Seniors During COVID-19 by Luiza Benisano

Caregiving During COVID-19 by Luiza Benisano

Respite Care and its Barriers by Marta Malone

Respite Care and Why it is Important by Marta Malone

Recognizing When You Need a Break by Mary Block


Caregiver Support Initiative Impact Report – 2018