DARTS is here to help someone caring for an aging or frail loved one by providing Respite Care, or a period of relief from 24-hour caregiving.

Getting a break where you can relax because you know someone is caring for your loved one, can definitely help caregivers care better. It can increase the length of time the person is able to continue providing care. Getting that break will make their quality of care better because they will likely have more patience and willingness to focus on the care receiver when they return.

It can also be very good for their loved one. While the caregiver may provide the best possible care, the volunteer isn’t around all the time and hasn’t heard the care receivers stories. The relationship between the volunteer and the care receiver shouldn’t be forgotten as they will benefit from having stimulating interactions with someone new. Generally their whole world has shrunk down to mainly their caregiver and while initially it might be frightening to welcome someone new into their lives, typically it is a welcome diversion.

Compassionate and well-trained respite volunteers stay with the person who is ill or frail so the caregiver can take a break. Respite can be provided weekly for up to 4 hours at a time. The caregiver can enjoy an afternoon with a friend, run errands, keep a golf date, or just rest. The respite service fee is on a sliding scale (based on the care receiver's income). For more information, call 651.455.1560 or send us an e-mail.

The service is funded in part by the Metropolitan Area Agency on Aging (through the federal Older Americans Act) and in part by the Greater Twin Cities United Way.