The Doha International Family Institute (DIFI) recently hosted a seminar to explore the findings of a survey entitled “Experiences of Home Caregivers for Elderly People in Qatar”.

The conference, funded by DIFI in collaboration with University of Calgary in Qatar (UCQ), sought to explore the results of the qualitative survey, which gathered information from in-depth interviews with 22 caregivers in Qatar.

The seminar also focused on the stress and burdens of caregiving, coping strategies, and the benefits caregivers attain from their duties. During the event, participants also gave first-hand accounts of their experiences with the elderly, and the challenges and obstacles they regularly face.

Ms Noor Al Malki Al Jehani, Executive Director, DIFI said:

In an era of increasing life expectancy facilitated by improved medical care and better quality of life, it is important for Qatar to address the needs of its elderly population and their caregivers. Very often it is family members who provide this care and they endure many burdens in their effort to look after loved ones. These challenges are exacerbated by a lack of professional care knowledge, long hours, and demanding health conditions, to name just a few.’

Dr Abdallah Badahdah, Director of Family Research, DIFI, said:

This is a very important study for Qatar. It holds great significance to the elderly population in Qatar. It is vital that caregivers understand the needs of their elderly relatives and know which local authorities they can reach out to for support and who is able to assist them in their invaluable role.’

Several academics took part in the meeting, including Dr Azza Abdelmoneium, Lead Researcher, DIFI said:

The seminar enabled us to pinpoint the major challenges caregivers face. The survey results offer an important starting point for us to improve the quality of life for both caregivers and the people they look after.’

During the event, healthcare and community members strategised ways to improve daily life and local services for caregivers, which included the advocacy of voluntary community support groups, home care visits, respite services, and educational services.

DIFI is a member of Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development (QF), and, through this event, demonstrated its support of QF’s mission of fostering a progressive society that prioritises family and social development.

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