REST is an educational course that provides the training directly to people who want to be volunteer respite workers.
You may know a friend or business associate who regularly provides care to a disabled or ill loved one. Caregiving can be demanding, stressful and all-consuming. For their own sake, caregivers need help too. Respite care—care provided to a child or adult with special healthcare needs in order to give temporary relief to the family caregiver—can be a welcome solution. Caregivers often rely on individuals from their own personal network to volunteer to help out.
The REST program provides the skills and tools needed to take on those responsibilities.
To help create a network of individuals who are trained in providing quality, compassionate respite care, Marklund, a nonprofit organizaton in Chicago’s western suburbs, developed REST–Respite Education and Support Tools–a unique two-fold educational program.
This programs is interactive and highly detailed in order to prepare the volunteers to care for clients with various diagnoses, ranging from children with developmental disabilities, to adults recovering from a stroke or an accident, and older adults diagnosed with a form of dementia.
Partially underwritten by a private grant, this program was developed by a team headed by Lois Sheaffer, REST Program Director and Master Trainer. Having been involved in respite since the early 1980s as a respite worker, respite program manager, and respite worker trainer, she maintained a leadership role in the Illinois Respite Coalition and is a member of ARCH, the national respite coalition.
REST programs can be customized around any organization’s requirements, provided at their facility or an off-site location and delivered in one- or two-day formats.