The American Association for Caregiving Youth® (AACY), a nonprofit corporation that is the only national resource for children who provide care for family members who are ill, injured, elderly or disabled, recently established its Caregiving Youth Institute (CYI) to raise the level of awareness of the multi-system needs of caregiving youth along with solutions for their support through the multiple initiatives of C.A.R.E.
(Connection, Advocacy, Research, and Education).
American Association of Caregiving Youth
An initiative of the CYI is to engage and educate U.S., state and local legislators, along with other influencers about caregiving youth, their contributions to society now and in the future when they become educated adults.
Ultimately policy changes with appropriations locally, at the state level and federally should include caregiving youth as well as adult family caregivers, encompass youth caregiving contributions for community service hours, and have long-term recognition as providers of care in their important role in health delivery.
**Caregiving Youth Repository at University of North Carolina
Caregiving Youth Research Collaborative
The CYI aims to continue existing and support new research projects with various medical schools and universities, while seeking funding to update the statistics in the only national study, Young Caregivers in the US (2005) Download Here
The data, now a decade old, is critical as there have been many demographic and healthcare system changes during the past ten years. The results of this new data will provide impetus for action and further establish the American Association of Caregiving Youth as the premier U.S. organization addressing the needs of caregiving youth. Simultaneously, strengthening the relationships with several local universities will promote this work to students in related professions
The CYI pursues opportunities to educate the public, educators and healthcare professionals about this issue, while furthering the affiliate network partnerships with universities, participating in conferences, webinars, video productions, peer-reviewed journal publications, social and other multi-media and formal presentations. Successful workshop curriculum and other materials are available.
One new connection for U.S. children who are caring for ill, injured, elderly or disabled family members is through their participation in a CYI hosted Caregiving Youth Forum and a biweekly peer support group on The Caregiver Space, an on-line community for caregivers of all ages.