Seeking caregiver recommendations (Alzheimer’s)

I am seeking a caregiver to provide in-home support to my dad, who is caring for my mom full time.  My mom has early onset Alzheimer’s.  German language skills would be a plus since my mother is German and has lost all English speaking ability.  If you have any recommendations, or advice from your experience with this sort of a search, I would love to hear from you.  We are in Berkeley.

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Sorry you're going through this. You might be able to find a caregiver just by asking around, but also you might want to reach out to an agency as they would be connected to a great range of caregivers (might be more likely to find a german speaker).  And if you're working with an agency, they can provide a backup if the primary one is sick or on vacation. I would recommend working with a geriatric care manager (GCM)  to figure out a next step  - they can help you connect with an agency if that's what you want to do. Try GCM Linda Wurth who has a lot of experience, compassion, solutions.   lindawurth [at] 

This is so tough. My recommendation would be to find an independent caregiver if you can and then also have a relationship with an agency for when you need overnight or substitute support. That is what worked for me in arranging care for my mother with brain disease. It is a lot easier going through an agency than hiring someone yourself but I have found the quality of agency caregivers to be all over the map, from extremely experienced and caring to folks with very little experience or heart for the work (and I have found that to be the most important, this work is HARD and you want a caregiver who sees it as a calling). If your mother is getting home health services, they might have a list of providers they recommend, and so might her provider‘s office. We also got recommendations from our hospice care service, which I have used for overnight care as well, but for ongoing weekday care I actually ended up hiring someone who had previously cared for my son. She hadn’t worked as an adult caregiver before but she had cared for a family member and trained as a behavioral tech and I knew her to be trustworthy, patient, and calm under frustrating circumstances.  If you do go the independent caregiver route you will need to get set up as employer and get worker’s compensation insurance. I would under no circumstances hire someone “ under the table” for this. You are exposing yourself and the caregiver to great risk considering the not insignificant chance of injury in this role.

If you are not already connected, this is a wonderful organization and can usually help with all things related: