Family Caregivers assist family members, friends and neighbors with activities of daily living and/or medical tasks.

It is an important service they provide for older adults and people with disabilities and it requires time, dedication and patience.

The level of care needed may change over time. This career often brings caregivers much joy, but it also comes with many challenges. It is important that the needs and concerns of both the person receiving care and the caregiver be addressed for this relationship to stay healthy.

Knowledge, support, communication and self-care will help the caregiving journey.

Services & Supports

There are services and supports that could add to what you provide as a caregiver. Services such as home delivered meals and transportation can help with the amount of assistance needed. Refer to the Services & Supports section of MyPlaceCT to explore these options.

Respite Services

Respite, or relief, from caregiving responsibilities is often needed for caregivers to improve their well-being and avoid burnout. Not doing so could affect their ability to provide care. 

Respite is most effective when used early and regularly. Temporary breaks can be scheduled by using adult day services, in-home care or short-term stays in a care facility. Visit the In-Home Care section to learn more about these services and supports. Caregivers can use this time in any way they choose. Taking this time for yourself helps the well-being of the caregiver and therefore the person who is being cared for.

National Family Caregiver Support Program
The National Family Caregiver Support Program offers several services to support family caregivers such as short-term relief, home safety modifications and connecting caregivers with support groups.

Connecticut Statewide Respite Program
The Connecticut Statewide Respite Program helps individuals living with Alzheimer’s, related disorders, and their families access respite care services and supports.

Support Groups, Communities and Centers

Emotional support can make a huge difference when dealing with the stresses of caregiving. Talking to other caregivers and professionals can provide comfort and help create new skills as you learn from and support each other.

Caregivers are able to connect with each other and with professionals in ways that meet their needs and preferences. This support can be provided through:

Support Groups

  • Alzheimer’s Support Groups
    The Alzheimer’s Association offers in-person support groups for caregivers and individuals living with Alzheimer’s. All support groups are hosted by trained individuals. Many locations also have groups for children, individuals with younger-onset and early-stage Alzheimer’s, adult caregivers and others with specific needs. Visit their website to find a local support group.
  • Brain Injury Support Groups
    The Brain Injury Alliance of CT (BIAC) sponsors support groups giving individuals with brain injuries and their caregivers the opportunity to connect and share their stories. In addition, Project Genesis began hosting a Family & Caregiver Brain Injury Support Group that focuses on the needs of family members and caregivers of an individual with a brain injury. Most groups are open to all individuals with brain injuries who wish to attend. To find out more about BIAC’s support groups, email the Education & Outreach Manager, at or call 860-219-0291 x306.

Learn More
Visit 2-1-1 to find in-person support groups near you.

Message Boards / Online Communities

Online communities help caregivers connect with each other. There are many different types of groups, including those for people with a disability or illness, and those for caregivers.

  • Caregiver-Online
    Caregiver-Online, which is funded by the Family Caregiver Alliance, is a group for families, partners and caregivers of adults with Alzheimer’s, stroke, brain injury and other chronic health conditions. The group offers a safe place to discuss the stresses, challenges and rewards of providing care for a loved one.
  • ALZConnected®
    ALZConnected is a free online community for everyone affected by Alzheimer’s or dementia-related illnesses, including: caregivers, people living with dementia, family members, friends and individuals who have lost someone to dementia.

Note that this list of online communities is not a complete list. Do an internet search if you don’t find one that fits your specific needs.

Caregiver Centers

The Goldstone Caregiver Center at Danbury Hospital is available to those who are providing care for a family member or friend. It offers services, programs and comfortable features to address the mental, physical, and spiritual health of the caregiver. Go here to learn more about the Goldstone Center.

Online Resources

The internet allows informal, or unpaid, caregivers access to many online websites and educational guides they can use as a resource.

Comprehensive Caregiving Guides

  • Prepare to Care Planning Guide
    The Prepare to Care Planning Guide is a complete guide that can help caregivers start the process of caring for a family member or friend. There are checklists and goal charts to help caregivers stay organized. Download the Prepare to Care Planning Guide.
  • A Practical Guide for Caregivers, National MS Society
    A Practical Guide for Caregivers is a booklet that offers tips and advice to caregivers of people with Multiple Sclerosis. Download the booklet.
  • The Conversation Project Starter Kit
    Beginning the conversation about end-of-life care can be difficult. The Conversation Starter Kit is a useful tool that can help caregivers talk to their loved one about next steps. Download the free starter kit.

Caregiver Websites

Websites can connect caregivers to helpful services and supports. Here are a few of the leading informational sites for caregivers:

  • AARP
    AARP has many articles, tools and open discussions to assist caregivers.
  • Alzheimer’s Association, Connecticut Chapter
    The Alzheimer’s Association offers many resources for caregivers including fact sheets, publications and news items related to Alzheimer’s disease. Their website also provides links and contact information for regional chapters.
  • Caregiver Action Network
    The Caregiver Action Network (CAN) website provides education, support and resources to caregivers. It also includes links to other helpful websites. Caregivers will find recent articles, tips and information about CAN and its programs.
  • is a website that offers open discussions, blogs, information and webinars on caregiving.
  • Family Caregiver Alliance
    The Family Caregiver Alliance provides resource and referral information to caregivers. The website contains information about online support groups and upcoming tele-workshops for caregivers.

Legal Matters and Rights

Family and Medical Leave Act

When caregiving starts to take up too much personal time, the caregiver may consider taking unpaid leave, or time off, from work. When thinking about this decision, it is important that people understand their rights under both Connecticut and federal law. Like employers in every state, Connecticut employers must follow the federal Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA), which allows eligible employees to take unpaid leave, with the right to return to work, for certain reasons. 

Under both state and federal FMLA, employees can take leave to care for a family member who has a serious illness. Employees can take leave to care for a parent or parent-in-law, child or spouse. Visit the CT Department of Labor website to learn more about FMLA.

See the Your Legal Rights section on My Place CT for other Legal Resources.

Connecticut Paid Leave

Connecticut Paid Leave
CT Paid Leave allows you to take time off of work to care for yourself or loved ones without worrying about lost pay. Funded through a small payroll deduction, this program is managed by the CT Paid Leave Authority.