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We are pleased to announce a two year technology-based pilot project that brings together a wide variety of experts from various industries and disciplines to educate adult children and seniors about Power of Attorney issues. The project will feature live workshops, webinars, website videos, DVD’s, online forums, podcasts and downloadable tools. Legal, financial and social service experts will share their knowledge and give individuals and families an opportunity to have their questions addressed, increase their understanding and develop skills and strategies to help them deal with some of the complex and difficult issues of aging. 

“This national,  inter-generational, public education project is a “supported call to action” for families to start talking about their Power of Attorney issues and take definable steps towards their own greater peace of mind”, says Mary Bart, Chair of Caregiving Matters.

This project will bring together a wide variety of experts from various disciplines to educate adult children and seniors on such topics as

  • Senior Care, Health and Safety
  • Housing Options
  • Tax Issues / Credits
  • Financial Planning
  • Insurance Options
  • Estate planning
  • Funeral Planning

When we say “Power of Attorney” (or POA), we are really referring to attorneys or Substitute Decision Makers (SDM’s).  Although “POA” is an incorrect title for a person, it is the common title that most people will understand.  For example, it is not unusual to hear someone say: “I am my Mother’s POA”.  We conducted a focus group to ask 30 people if they were POA’s, SDM’s or Attorneys.  Results showed that all 30 thought that they were POA’s, 4 of the 30 also thought that they were SDM’s and no one thought that they were Attorneys, because none of them are lawyers. This focus group helps to explain why we are purposely referring to SDM/Attorney as POA’s.  Despite the confusion in terminology, our goal is to reach families by the titles that they think they are, regardless of whether those colloquial titles are correct.

This project targets:

  • Those who are already named as POA’s, (SDM’s)
  • Those who expect to be named as POA’s, (SDM’s)
  • Those who have not yet named their POA, (SDM’s)

We will produce a day of workshops that will be viewable as live webinars and then later will be produced as website videos and DVD’s.  We will also produce podcasts that will be a collaborative, social-forum series that brings together experts such as:  care managers, doctors, retirement homes executives, lawyers, accountants, trust officers, funeral directors and social workers.  Here are a few details about our Podcasts:

Each podcast will feature a specific topic and a new guest expert in a causal conversational, questions and answers format. The content will be short, easy to understand and wide-ranging.  Each podcast is intended to provide general information only and is not intended to be a substitute for seeking personalized legal, financial or other advice.

Our goal is to raise issues for our audience to consider and then further explore on their own, in their own local communities with their own local experts. The podcasts will also include a “Social Forum” where website visitors will be able to continue the conversations on-line and be able to offer suggestions for future podcast topics  

Aired podcasts will be stored and cataloged.  Site visitors will be able to scan the list of podcasts and “click, listen and learn” at their own pace. We will each our target market where they live, on their own terms, when they have the time and energy to listen and learn.   Contact information about each guest expert will be included so that site visitors may contact the guest experts to further explore the topic and discuss their issues in a confidential manner.

We will gladly work with individuals and groups who share our desire to educate POA’s to reach as many people as possible.  For example, some may want to be podcast guest experts, others may offer to promote the project to their clients or to their own groups and associations while others may want to post the project on their websites (as part of their own social media strategies).  We assume that most people interested in this project will have specific ideas to support our initiative.

There will also be sponsorship and advertising opportunities for those who wish to promote their products and services to our community.  We are open to discussing how this project can benefit other organizations while supporting a greater / bigger network.  This project is for all of us to develop, share ideas and create exciting ways to come together to educate and support POA’s. 

The Government of Canada’s New Horizons for Seniors Program has provided $50,000 in funding for this project. Other initial project supporters are: The Care Guide, Care Connect, The Healing Cycle Foundation and Scotiatrust.

 “Caregiving Matters” is an Internet-based registered Canadian charity dedicated to educating and supporting family caregivers.  90% of our work is done on-line and by leveraging technologies, 10% is done by producing local educational events. 

Our charitable registration number is 82293 0616 RR0001, our legal name is: “Losing Our Parents”.

For further information, contact: 

 

Mary Bart, Chair, Caregiving Matters

mary@caregivingmatters.ca

905 939 2931

www.caregivingmatters.ca

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