Getting Started

Getting Started


Learn About Caregiving in Ontario

Helpful Definitions

Identifying Your Needs



The Change Foundation’s website has valuable information for caregivers. You will find links to a number of their reports throughout this section. If you are interested in learning more about caregiving in Ontario, download Out of the Shadows and into the Circle.

The Caregiver Exchange offers general information about caregiving, links to a caregiver support guide, information related to community supports, an online discussion forum and educational videos.



If you are new to caregiving, you may not be familiar with some of the terms you are hearing. This reference guide includes helpful definitions. We will continue to add new terms to this reference guide.

Caregiver - Caregivers are family members, partners, friends or neighbours who provide personal, social and psychological support to someone in need. 

Carer - Some organizations use carer instead of caregiver. Both are family members, partners, friends or neighbours who provide personal, social and psychological support to someone in need.

Caregiver Burnout - a state of physical, emotional, and mental exhaustion that may be accompanied by a change in attitude - from positive and caring to negative and unconcerned. Burnout can occur when caregivers don't get the help they need, or if they try to do more than they are able - either physically or financially. Caregivers who are "burned out" may experience fatigue, stress, anxiety, and depression.

Care Recipient - the person you are caring for

Young Caregiver or Young Carer - Young Carergivers are children or youth who are helping to care for a sibling, a parent or a grandparent.

Respite - temporary relief or rest.

Respite Care - a temporary, substitute living arrangement that provides a brief period of relief or rest (usually more than twenty-four hours) for the caregiver.



Before you begin to search for support, take a few minutes to reflect on your role and the many tasks you manage. Next, pause and think about how you’re managing the stress of performing these tasks. A ‘task check list’ is provided for you, as well as a quiz.

Step One: Tasklist

Take an inventory of the role you play as a caregiver. Identify the tasks you manage and the resources you are currently using. This might include support you receive from other family members or religious groups. This exercise will give you a better picture of all the tasks you are managing, the supports you are using and where you need extra help.   


Click to download the Caregiver Tasklist

Step 2: Check In On You

This quiz may help you to reflect on how you’re feeling and to think about the level of stress in your life.


Click to download the Caregiver Quiz

Consider the tasks you manage, as well as your quiz score. Do you need a break, assistance with transportation, information related to finances, support in the home, help with house maintenance, someone to talk to, or are you a young caregiver who isn’t sure where to turn?

We hope you find these resources on our website helpful. We will continue to add supports and services as they are identified or expanded.

The task list and quiz have been re-printed with permission from Caregivers Nova Scotia.

© 2018 The Ontario Caregiver Organization

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