Duke’s Aging Center Family Support Program established the first support groups in NC for families of adults with memory disorders in 1980 with Duke Hospital Auxiliary and NC Foundation grants. Now the original groups sponsor support groups of the Alzheimer’s Association or Alzheimer's NC in almost all 100 counties.
The Program’s newsletter, The Caregiver, has linked families and professionals caring for persons with memory disorders as the oldest continuously publishing family caregiver newsletter in the US.
Since 1984, the Program has been funded by the NC Divisionof Aging as a NC first responder clearinghouse, crisis hotline and technical assistance center for families and professionals caring for people with memory disorders. The state pays for free subscriptions to the newsletter (circulation 11,000 in 50 states and 9 countries) for any NC resident. Since 1985, Lisa Gwyther, Program Director, has directed education for the Joseph and Kathleen Bryan Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center (ADRC) at Duke.
In 1999 Duke’s Family Support Program received the Outstanding Human Service Agency of the Year Award from the NC National Association of Social Workers. In 2000, the Program’s social workers were funded by Duke Human Resources to offer free confidential elder care consultations for Duke employees and their families. The Duke Employee Elder Care Consultation Service was selected by the National Alliance for Caregiving for its June, 2012, Washington DC press release and publication, Best Practices in Workplace Eldercare.
Duke Family Support Program
Room 3513, 3rd floor Blue Zone, Duke South Clinics
Box 3600 Duke University Medical Center
Durham, NC 27710
Phone: (919) 660-7510
Fax: (919) 684-8569
Lisa P. Gwyther, MSW, LCSW, Director
Bobbi G. Matchar, MSW, MHA, Social Worker
Yaneli Smith, MSW, Social Worker