Anne Arundel County Department of Aging and Disabilities Caregiver Program Manager Receives Prestigious Award
Exemplary performance recognized by MGA
Annapolis, MD (June 17, 2020) - Today, the program manager for the Anne Arundel County Department of Aging and Disabilities National Family Caregiver Support Program, Respite Care Program, and the Telephone Reassurance Program, Mary Chaput, was awarded the Maryland Gerontological Association (MGA) Award for Individual Achievement. The 2020 MGA Annual Conference was held virtually today. The mission of the MGA is to advance the knowledge and increase the competence of individuals striving to improve the quality of life of older adults and their families.
Ms. Chaput was nominated by her supervisor, Sarah Stein, director, Aging and Disability Resource Center Planning and Programming for the Department of Aging and Disabilities. Ms. Chaput was nominated for this award for the following:
trained more than 3,600 individuals in an experiential dementia program known as Communicating Through Behaviors (CBT.) This number includes Anne Arundel County library staff, firefighters, as well as all police officers;
organizes a family caregiver conference each year as well as a dinner for caregivers to get a delicious meal and relaxing night out to honor National Family Caregivers Month; consistently able to leverage sponsorships from the community to support the cost of this annual event;
passionate about intergenerational initiatives, including her work to help grandparents and other relatives raising children, as well as her partnerships with schools for Communicating Through Behaviors and Music and Memory;
spends many evenings and weekends doing outreach and educational presentations at churches, libraries, civic group meetings, and other locations;
during COVID-19, Ms. Chaput seamlessly transitioned to virtual platforms, taking the initiative to record presentations to post online to share tips to help caregivers better manage the unique stresses of caregiving during times of social isolation;
started a Facebook group for her caregiver support group members and two virtual support groups;
writes a column for the Capital newspaper, caregiver newsletter, participates in various collaborations such as a caregiver workforce round table and advance directives educational partnership with the library, the local hospice, and hospital partners and spearheads the department's role as host for the Alzheimer's Association's Memory Cafes; and
manages the Telephone Reassurance Program, a daily well-check for individuals, and Respite Registry Program.
“Mary has been a tremendous asset to our department through her dedication and passion for older adults in our community,” said Ms. Stein. “Her innovations in the world of caregiving have helped countless members of the community to realize their importance and to know that they are not alone. Mary is always looking ahead on how to better serve the public, collecting surveys to gather caregivers' input on workshop topics for the coming year, and reading up on new trends from across the country and around the world.”
"Supporting family caregivers is a major pillar of service in the Department of Aging and Disabilities. I want to thank Mary for her leadership and representing this Department on a state-wide platform,” said Pam Jordan, director, Anne Arundel County Department of Aging and Disabilities. "Mary approaches her work with passion and innovation, and countless families have been lifted up through her work. I thank MGA for recognizing Mary’s accomplishments. This award is well deserved."
“I appreciate the support and encouragement from the department's management staff and the hard work provided by the family caregiver support programs team,” said Ms. Chaput.
The Maryland Gerontological Association was initiated in the early 1980s by leaders in the field of geriatrics and gerontology who resided and worked in Maryland and who wished to provide opportunities for professional networking among Maryland's gerontologists. The format for networking was realized primarily through the MGA's well respected and well attended annual conferences, which began in 1982 and aimed to provide outstanding presentations tapping the wealth of Maryland professional talent as well as from federal agencies and the National Institute on Aging.
If you have any questions, or would like to explore other services and programs from the Anne Arundel County Department of Aging and Disabilities, please contact us at 410-222-4257 or 410-222-4464. TTY users, please call via Maryland Relay 7-1-1. Alternative formats are available upon request.