Welcome to the CareBrigade!
"If you are a newly diagnosed Patient (or Caregiver) looking for a great way to build a nuturing community to empower the Patient throughout their medical journey ...this Web site can help."
"If you are a friend looking for a way to start a conversation with a Patient you love or care for about how to support them....this Web site can help."
What is the Goal of a CareBrigade?
Empowering Patients in asking for, their families and their friends in providing, the necessary medical, spiritual, and practical support Patients will need to facilitate full recovery.
Often a newly diagnosed Patient facing a life-threatening disease of frightening prognosis is asked by friends and family "What can I do for you?" Unfortunately at that moment the Patient has no more idea of what will be needed than the person asking the question. This site helps the Patient, the Caregiver, or worried friends/families project needs even before the treatment plan is generated so the Patient, friends and family can devise a plan and enroll helpers to be on call.
How Does a CareBrigade Work?
The CareBrigade system empowers a Patient, supported by at least two friends or loved ones (one acting as Co-Leader), to identify and project what kinds of help/tasks the Patient might need over time, to help the Patient identify and line up folks whose gifts match those specific Roles, and to manage the team during the times the Patient is too ill to do it for themselves.
- Identifies in advance practical tasks the Patient might need support with, friends and family whose talents match those needs, suggests some easy,efficient, and free Web tools for managing CareBrigade volunteers at a distance.
- Rallies the Patient's acquaintances, family and friends as an "on-call" support team for the Patient whenever he/she is overwhelmed, zonked out, or debilitated by the cures.
- Empowers and supports the Patient in making informed, thoughtful, and satisfying medical decisions.
- Empowers and supports the Patient in making sure the Patient's wishes, values, preferences, and expressed needs are respected and honored by all.
- Helps the Patient find a Spiritual Advocate and to use integrative mind-body healing and relaxation practices to manage anxiety, fear, and stress that depletes the body's own healing power during treatments and in recovery.
Who makes a good Co-Leader? See Checklist for Choosing Your Co-Leader on Roles & Tasks page
How to Start a CareBrigade?
THE PATIENT, A TRUSTED FRIEND, OR A FAMILY MEMBER CAN START THE BALL ROLLING!
1. Head over to How it Works and download the 5 Steps
FRIENDS? Look for which Roles match your gifts, talents, and/or life style demands. Be prepared to only volunteer for what you have the gift for. Never do what would be a "sacrifice" or occur as a chore (Hate to cook, volunteer to drive). Be clear of what restrictions you would have so others can fill in those gaps (ex. I work weekends).
PATIENT? Brainstorm with Co-Leader which Roles you are likely to need during your medical journey to support your full healing and complete recovery. Brainstorm which friends, neighbors, acquaintances, and familiy members you can think of whose gifts and circumstances might be perfect for those Roles.
GOOD NEWS? Patient doesn't need to ask them to help. Co-Leader will ask, via email, take all no's, and buffer Patient from people he/she doesn't want to see or talk with.
3. Don't know what kind of practical help you or your Patient might need during recovery or long-term chemo treatments? There's a sample Wish List to give you some ideas. Work with the Patient or Caregiver to customize this Wish list to match this Patient's particular illness, treatment needs, and circumstances.
Check out the Practical Help section of our Resource Page to get links to lots of FREE online tools to support help like meals, drivers, and keeping in touch. EX. Use a techie friend to schedule and manage the "helpers" using FREE online sites like Lotsa Helping Hands or Google calendar.
NEED MORE HELP? Email Florence at email@example.com for 30 minutes FREE phone coaching to get started setting up and customizing your CareBrigade.
Click on the green print below to view a movie about a CareBrigade present in Nature.