Family Caregiver Alliance
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Family Caregiver Alliance (FCA) is a national nonprofit caregiver support organization headquartered in San Francisco, California. Beginning as the all-volunteer Family Survival Project in 1977, it was founded to serve the needs of those caring for a friend or family member with serious cognitive impairment. At the time, Alzheimer's was not yet a household word, and those caring for a husband, wife, daughter, neighbor, or other loved one were expected to deal with the challenges of total care completely on their own, if they were thought about at all.
In 1979, the organization's founding members soon convinced California's legislature to approve landmark legislation that would dramatically expand the fledgling organization's mission.
According to FCA's website, "The program grew as media coverage attracted the attention of families throughout the San Francisco Bay Area, and subsequently became the first voluntary, community-based organization in the country to respond to the challenges of caring for loved ones with serious cognitive disorders striking after age 18. The 'Family Survival Project' became the Bay Area’s Caregiver Resource Center.
In 1984, the legislature "acted to ensure that all Californians had access to innovative support services, establishing ten additional Caregiver Resource Centers (CRCs) throughout the state, replicating the FCA model." In 2001, the National Center on Caregiving was established at FCA to advance the development of high-quality, cost-effective programs and policies nationwide that support and sustain the important work of families and friends caring for loved ones with chronic, disabling health conditions.
Today, Family Caregiver Alliance acts as a single point-of-entry for access to services and information for California's family caregivers, and as a clearinghouse for caregiver information throughout the US.