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Caregiver Connect

January 2010–July 2011

Caregiver Connect

The Purpose

Toward the end of her life, Dorothy Patterson lived with dementia. The Patterson Foundation explored transforming the dementia continuum of care in Sarasota by collaborating and coordinating with national and local experts and providers. After speaking with people working in the dementia and caregiving space across the country — and in the United Kingdom — The Patterson Foundation identified a need for access to education, tools, and resources for caregivers, patients, and family members.

Strengthening the Impact

The Patterson Foundation worked with Orlando nonprofit Share the Care to develop a business and operational model that would enhance Caregiver Central, an assessment tool and access to caregiving resources, and position it in the marketplace. The Patterson Foundation connected Share the Care with a number of partners for the purpose of educating those who would benefit from this resource.

FAQs Click on frequently asked questions below to learn more about this initiative...

Why did The Patterson Foundation support this initiative?

The Caregiver Central online platform provided a solution for caregivers in a given market. By answering a series of online questions, the user would be informed of local agencies offering needed services for caregivers. At that time, the product was available in Orlando, FL, and The Patterson Foundation hoped it could be extended into other communities.

How did The Patterson Foundation get involved with Share the Care and its Caregiver Central product?

During its exploration of the caregiving landscape, The Patterson Foundation met a number of individuals and organizations including the Public Health Institute’s Center for Technology and Aging, the Senior Resource Alliance, and the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation. Through these relationships, we learned about Share the Care.

Why did the initiative come to a conclusion?

After two years of working together, both Share the Care and The Patterson Foundation realized that the goals for the initiative were not aligned. We agreed that we should each focus on the important work of our respective organizations. We learned valuable lessons that The Patterson Foundation still applies today:
  • At the inception of a partnership, it is important to discuss and document goals, objectives, expectations, and general understandings. This should be a formal meeting between potential partners. While we did discuss these topics throughout our "courtship," we didn't do so in a formal, intentional manner.
  • Enter into a partnership recognizing that building trust evolves over time, and only when trust is built can candid conversations occur. Because we had built trust with each other, we could have an objective discussion about the future of the initiative.
  • Creating partnerships is an intentional and methodical process and should not be taken lightly. Once created, partnerships need to be nurtured in order to grow and for trust to develop between the parties. Once trust is developed, all topics of discussion are available and the difficult discussions become much easier.

What was the impact of the work?

The Patterson Foundation invested more than $100,000 plus consulting time and expertise, and Share the Care developed a solid, functional tool that helped caregivers in Central Florida and beyond.

Who can I contact about the Caregiver Connect initiative?

For more information about this past initiative, contact initiative consultant Michael Corley: mcorley@thepattersonfoundation.org.


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