There are currently 8.3 million helpers in France supporting an elderly, dependant person on a daily basis.
Their tasks are often multiple. They are involved in cooking, cleaning, gardening, washing and dressing, but also keeping them company, walking, talking, discussing the past and maintaining the links with their friends and relations.
There is also often an element of intellectual stimulation or ensuring adherence with medical treatment, under professional supervision.
Thanks to theses helpers, it is often possible for the patient to extend autonomy
However, whether they are a family member, or a home care assistant, these helpers can also feel warn out and isolated. A “National Helpers Days” is dedicated to them each year in France on October 6th. For this occasion, the Association Française des Aidants (French Helpers Society) opens a dedicated telephone advice line and France 5 broadcasts “La minute des aidants” (The helpers’ minute) for a few days at 20h35.
There are also specific web sites providing information and forums. “Le site des aidants”, by Malakoff Médéric, provides useful contacts, an events program, news items and the “Helpers ideas” forum for sharing ideas.
Here are a few links for these initiatives: