CARTI offers workshop

Teaching cancer caregivers the importance of taking care of themselves as well as their loved ones is the focus of a new, free workshop being offered on Thursday, July 27, at the CARTI Cancer in Little Rock.

“Who Cares? You Care: Taking Care of the Cancer Caregiver” is a free, open educational workshop addressing the unique gifts, challenges and fears associated with cancer diagnosis and treatment.

When faced with the cancer diagnosis of a loved one, those closest to the patient will also embark upon his or her own unique cancer experience.

“Cancer is, unquestionably, a family disease,” said CARTI Counseling and Resources Coordinator Olivia Wyatt. “While it’s true that one patient actually ‘has’ the cancer, his or her diagnosis directly impacts those close to them in an equally profound way.”

“When it comes to the patient, there are tangible treatment options available to actively address and combat the disease,” said Wyatt, who is also a licensed social worker. “Unfortunately, the same has not always been true for the caregiver.”

Examining the sometimes complex roles, responsibilities and limitations of the caregiver, Wyatt says the workshop aims to provide tips, tools and techniques designed to help cope, manage and navigate through the cancer journey.

“Recognizing and accepting your own emotional and physical needs is not selfish, it’s necessary,” said Wyatt. “Doing so can restore caregivers with the strength, spirit and mental resolve needed to better equip them to care for the patient.”

While the instinctive reaction may be to focus all available time, energy and concern on the patient, Wyatt said doing so at the cost of the caregiver’s own health and well-being can be equally detrimental to both the caregiver and the patient.

“You know, it’s true what they say,” said Wyatt.  “You can’t fill a cup if you’re pouring from an empty pot.”

Registration is open now for the next session of “Who Cares? You Care” scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Thursday, July 27, at the CARTI Cancer Center in Little Rock.

To pre-register, contact Carolyn Garrett in the CARTI Patient Resource Center at 501.660.7610 or [email protected]