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Family Caregivers Conference Registration Open

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The 2014 Family Caregivers Conference drew a large audience of government officials, agency representatives and family caregivers. Photo credit County of Maui, Monica Morakis.

The 2014 Family Caregivers Conference drew a large audience of government officials, agency representatives and family caregivers. Photo credit County of Maui, Monica Morakis.

The Department of Housing and Human Concerns, Maui County Office on Aging, will sponsor Maui County’s 14th Annual Family Caregivers Conference on Friday, Nov. 20, 2015, from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Mākena Beach & Golf Resort.

The annual event, designed to educate and support family caregivers, is held in November in observance of National Caregivers month.

This month is proclaimed by the US president and Maui County to recognize the importance of caregivers.

The 14th Annual Family Caregivers Conference, co-sponsored by AARP, will feature keynote speakers, and more than 20 resource exhibitors offering attendees free information and materials.

This year’s keynote speaker will once again be Dr. Laura Mosqueda, MD, FAAFP, AGSF, of the Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California. She is a widely respected authority on geriatric and family medicine, elder abuse, and care of the elderly and underserved.


Dr. Mosqueda is also an expert on medical education curricula design, development and implementation.


Prior to joining USC, Dr. Mosqueda served the past 16 years at the University of California, Irvine School of Medicine as associate dean of primary care, chair and professor of family medicine and geriatrics, and holder of the Ronald W. Reagan Endowed Chair in Geriatrics.

The event will also feature Hawaii-born guest speaker Frances Kakugawa, an author, poet and caregiver. In 2004, Kakugawa was awarded a Hawai‘i-Pacific Gerontological Society Award for her work with the state’s elderly.

She has authored several books, including the Mom’s Choice Award-winning children’s book, Wordsworth Dances the Waltz. This story was written in memory of her mother, Matsue, who loved to dance the waltz and foxtrot at Kapoho School PTA meetings. Her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s; this book was written to help children and families understand Alzheimer’s and aging grandparents.


Today, Kakugawa continues to write, conduct support groups for caregivers, conduct writing workshops for adults and children, and present lectures on caregiving and writing throughout the US.

Pamela Cunningham, Hawai‘i SHIP coordinator, will cover Medicare in Hawai‘i.

Heather Greenwood-Junkermeier will discuss the six-week Powerful Tools for Caregivers training currently available to families in Maui County.

The conference is $15 for seniors, caregivers and students and $25 for professionals; registration includes continental breakfast and a buffet lunch.

Scholarships are available from Maui County Office on Aging for the general public and for Native Hawaiians through ALU LIKE Inc.

Bus transportation provided by of Maui Economic Opportunity Inc. from Central Maui to the resort is available for registered participants by contacting the Maui County Office on Aging at 270-7755.

To register, mail the participant’s name, agency affiliation (if any), address, phone, email and a check payable to the Maui County Office on Aging by Friday, Nov. 13, to the Maui County Office on Aging, J. Walter Cameron Center, Room 20, Wailuku, HI 96793.

Agencies interested in participating as a exhibitors may contact Norma Circle for an application at  270-7755 or via email. The deadline for exhibitor applications is Monday, Oct. 19, 2015.

“Caring for ‘ohana is something most people don’t stop to ‘think’ about; they just do it,” said Maui County Executive on Aging Deborah Stone-Walls. “Whether based on ideology or cultural upbringing, it’s one of the concepts that holds strong in Hawai‘i. That doesn’t mean the life of a caregiver is easy, and there’s no ‘how-to’ book on caregiving. Therefore, caregivers often feel like they’re on their own. Caregivers learn to deal with life through trial and error or through discussion with family and friends. The truth is, family caregivers deserve as much help and support as possible, and this conference is a wonderful resource for our family caregivers.”

For more information on the conference, call 270-7755.

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