SC Alzheimer's Caregivers Ask To Keep Respite Care Funding in Budget
Being a caregiver herself, Patty Younts knows the importance of reciving Respite Funding.
Caregivers meet with their state representatives to discuss the importance of keeping Respite Funding in the budget.
By Nicole Lopes
Harold Younts is one of 80,000 people in South Carolina who suffers from Alzheimer's, a disorder that attacks your brain cells and causes memory loss.
Patty Younts is one of thousands of people who are the primary caregiver for a loved one; her husband.
"Howard was diagnosed in 2012 with Posterior cortical atrophy which is an atypical form of Alzheimer’s," explains Younts.
Patty retired from her job and took on a new full time role after Howard's diagnosis.
"Being the primary caregiver means 24/7," says Younts. "Being able to get respite care allows me some time for myself, allows me to be able to get out and go shop or do something I want."
Younts, and about 60 other South Carolinians want to bring attention to the need for state funding to help them bring in help and give them a chance to do things they cannot normally do like shop or go to a doctor’s appointment.
They are a part of Respite Care, funding that provides temporary care of a dependent elderly, ill, or handicapped person, providing relief for their usual caregivers.
Instead of sending emails and letters, these caregivers want to express their thoughts in a more personal way; with their own voices.
The caregivers in walked to the South Carolina State House on March 14th to share their stories about why respire funding is important to them in hopes that their legislatures would use that as a motive to renew it for another year.
Taylor Wilson is the Director of Communications for the South Carolina’s Alzheimer's Association chapter and she has helped raise awareness to the importance of respite funding for the past couple years.
"What we're asking our representatives and senators to do today is continue to support the respite care program that is already in the budget,” explains Wilson.
These caregivers are fighting hard to have the funding remain in South Carolina, but people like Younts want you to remember one thing.
"Its not that you don’t love them, you love them more than life but and you would take this away if you could but you can't," says Younts. "It’s the card we have been dealt and you just have to look for all the ways you can make it better.”
The fate of this bill will be determined in the next few weeks once the budget is finalized.