Skip to content
Sponsored Content

Addressing the everyday challenge and cost of family caregiving

Hero Home Care helps families prioritize the importance of planning ahead for a seniors' needs with personalized health, social and home care solutions
Hero Home Care supplies services to help seniors in Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley live independently while staying at home.

It can take a quiet toll, as not every caregiver will disclose how their caregiving responsibilities for their loved ones — whether an aging parent or spouse — affect their own well-being. However, they'll certainly feel it: physically, mentally, emotionally and financially.

For many British Columbians, most care – of any kind – is not provided by paid caregivers but rather by family, neighbours or friends.

According to the BC Ministry of Health, over 1.3 million people in British Columbia are unpaid caregivers and provide 80% of care in the community for family and friends. Not to mention, the majority of these individuals are caring for a chronically ill or disabled senior, some with dementia or Alzheimer's.

The issue is more prevalent than the average family caregiver realizes: a 2018 report from Statistics Canada reveals one in every four Canadians over the age of 15 is a caregiver. 

However, there are resources available to help educate and inspire family caregivers. 

"I think one of the biggest challenges we see today is that people just don't have the education on the different options out there that are available to them," says Danny Birch, co-founder & co-CEO, Hero Home Care.

Hero Home Care provides care for seniors wishing to live independently throughout Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley in the comfort of their own homes, with services from companionship to 24-hour nursing care, and everything in between. The organization also supports family members of loved ones needing care.

Balancing the demands of unpaid caregiving

Hero Home Care provides a diverse range of services, including 24-hour nursing care. Photo via: Hero Home Care.

According to The Canadian Centre for Caregiving Excellence, Canadians spend 5.7 billion unpaid hours each year on caregiving, with many struggling to meet the demands of care and paid work. In B.C. alone, the estimated economic value of family care work in 2018 accounted for $14.7 billion. This balancing act is simply not sustainable for a non-professional. 

Every day, unpaid caregivers assist with basic needs: dressing, bathing, cooking, medications or transportation, and, more often than not, they accomplish these tasks while managing their own job, parenting, or both, as well as maintaining household and social obligations.

This weighty schedule can lead to negative health effects on family caregivers, which may be gradual at first, but over time can intensify, leaving individuals feeling lonely, overwhelmed and frustrated, or even developing chronic pain or mental health issues like anxiety and depression.

The risk of burnout is ever present for those carrying such burdens alone and Hero Home Care is here to help share the load.

"We encourage people to start looking into care for their loved ones sooner than later and access the help before they need it," reveals Birch. "We want people to focus on preventative health care rather than reactive. Early on, it's a lot easier to keep someone healthy than it is to recover from any sort of incident, such as a fall.

"This is why we offer a free no obligation in-home Care Consult. By taking the proper steps, we can drastically reduce the chance of falls, caregiver burnout and many other life-altering events."

Family caregivers seeking support in Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley

The organization offers a free no-obligation in-home Care Consult, focusing on preventative rather than reactive care. Photo via: Hero Home Care.

"Our hope is that people can access information easier, to understand, and plan ahead," says Birch. "Understanding what costs are involved both financially and emotionally, and their time managing somebody's care is more extensive than I think most people realize."

Hero Home Care is the presenting partner of the sixth annual North Shore Seniors' Health Expo at the West Vancouver Seniors' Activity Centre, on June 7, from 11:15 a.m. – 12 p.m. Danny Birch will deliver an informative session on "Navigating the Care Continuum in B.C.," that will help empower you to make well-informed decisions regarding care for you and your loved ones. 

For more information, visit