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CancerCare's Online Services for Caregivers Receive Top Honors

The National Alliance for Caregiving, MetLife Foundation recognize CancerCare's online support groups as "innovative program that makes a difference"

July 23, 2008--CancerCare's online support groups for caregivers received top honors at the National Family Caregiving Awards ceremony, held in Nashville, Tenn. on July 22. The annual event, sponsored by the National Alliance for Caregiving, a Washington, D.C.-based coalition of national organizations, with support from the MetLife Foundation, recognizes community-based programs that support family caregivers who provide assistance to older adults.

CancerCare's program was one of six recognized for their innovativeness, effectiveness, and responsiveness to the needs of caregivers. Each honoree was evaluated and judged by a panel of caregiving experts and was awarded $25,000 to continue and enhance its support for caregivers.

"We are honored that our services have been recognized by the Alliance and Met Life," noted Richard Hara, DSW, director of online services at CancerCare. "Caregiving for a loved one facing cancer is often a full-time job that can be overwhelming and isolating. Offering our psychosocial services online makes it easier for caregivers to build community, have an outlet to share their concerns, and get professional guidance whenever they need it."

According to the Alliance, there are over 44.4 million family caregivers in the U.S. today. Nearly 60% of caregivers have jobs outside the home and nearly 40% of caregivers have children under the age of 18. Caregiving is the underpinning of the country's healthcare system, with a value to society estimated at $306 billion per year--more than the value of home care and nursing care combined. Experts anticipate that family caregiving will continue to grow in the decades ahead.

Established in 1996, The National Alliance for Caregiving is a non-profit coalition of national organizations focusing on issues of family caregiving. MetLife Foundation, established in 1976 by MetLife to carry on its long-standing tradition of corporate contributions and community involvement, is involved in a variety of aging-related initiatives.

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