Student Caregiver Resources

WCU is committed to supporting students who devote resources to caring for their children or family members and often face additional obstacles to success. The information on this page is designed to help you balance the competing tasks of your life as a student and caregiver by highlighting resources that provide academic support, financial support, and community support. These resources have a specific focus on the West Chester and Philadelphia areas. In this section, you will find information regarding assisting our elders, assisting others with mental health and addiction, healthcare services, identity-based support services, and resources for caregivers.

Assisting our Elders

  • Resources for Caregivers of Adults (PA)
  • Area Agencies on Aging: “Your local Area Agency on Aging (AAA) is the front door for aging services in your community. Your AAA is staffed with skilled workers who can provide information about services and also assist in obtaining access to those services. Pennsylvania has 52 Area Agencies on Aging that cover all 67 counties.” 
  • Adult Day Centers: “Adult Day Centers (ADC) provide social, recreational, and health services for older Pennsylvanians. They are a great resource for families and other caregivers who work and are unable to provide assistance during work hours.” 
  • Senior Community Centers: “Senior Community Centers offer meals, recreation, health and wellness programs, and a variety of other services for older Pennsylvanians. There are over 500 Senior Community Centers throughout Pennsylvania.”  
  • Eldercare Locator: This resource is a public service of the U.S. Administration on Aging and it connects individuals to services for older adults and their families. The phone number to contact a representative about this resource is 1-800-677-1116. 

Food Security for Elders & Families

  • Philadelphia Food Distribution Sites: Find free food and meals including food sites, student meal sites, senior meal sites, outdoor meal sites. 
    • These sites supplement the existing food pantry network. To find a food pantry near you:
      • Call 311. Make sure to call the pantry in advance to confirm their hours.
      • Call the WhyHunger hotline at 1-800-5HUNGRY or text your ZIP code to 1-800-548-6479 to receive a list of nearby food pantries.
  • Behavioral Health Treatment Services Locator: This is “a confidential and anonymous source of information for persons seeking treatment facilities in the United States or U.S. Territories for substance use/addiction and/or mental health problems.”
  • Network of Care: “Network of Care is a resource for individuals, families and agencies concerned with behavioral health. It provides information about behavioral health services, laws, and related news, as well as communication tools and other features.” National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI): This organization is the nation's largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans affected by mental illness. The NAMI HelpLine can be reached Monday through Friday, 10 am–6 pm, ET., 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or info@nami.org. 
  • Alcohol Dependency Resources: This link includes resources compiled by Healthy Minds Philly. A list of resources is provided that includes online AA meetings, community behavioral health residence, PA Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs and additional resources.
  • Opioid Dependency Resources: This link includes resources compiled by Healthy Minds Philly. A list of resources is provided that includes community organizations and additional resources.  
  • PACE Prescription Assistance Program: “Pennsylvania's prescription assistance programs for older adults, PACE and PACENET, offer low-cost prescription medication to qualified residents, age 65 and older. For more information, call 1-800-225-7223.”
  • Immunizations for Older Adults: To learn more about the recommended immunizations for older adults, please visit this resource. 

On Campus

  • West Chester University's Speech and Hearing Clinic: The Clinic offers free, full diagnostic evaluations for children and adults suspected of having speech, language, or hearing disorders. Treatment is offered in both individual and group settings and bilingual Spanish-English evaluations and treatment are available.
  • Culturally and Racially Sensitive Mental Health Treatment Services: This resource guide was created by Healthy Minds Philly. It includes a list of mental health treatment services provided by BIPOC professionals.
  • Family-Care, Community-Care and Self-Care Tool Kit: Healing in the Face of Cultural Trauma: This resource guide was created by the Community Healing Network and The Association of Black Psychologists. It is intended to serve as a resource for the Black community and it includes resources on education around anti-black racism, trauma, resiliency, and recovery.   
  • Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) Mental Health Resource Guide: This resource was created with a focus on BIPOC mental health. It includes a number of resources for support, and education. A number of mental health resources are provided across media platforms such as podcasts, websites, and therapist directories.
  • Trans Lifeline: “Support for transgender people by transgender people.” Phone number to call for support: 1-877-565-8860.
  • SAGE LGBT Elder Hotline: “Provides advocacy and services for LGBT older adults age 50 and over.” Phone number to call for support: 1-888-234-SAGE.
  • The LGBT National Hotline: “Peer support and local resource for all ages.” Phone number to call for support: 1-888-843-4564. 
  • Caregiver Support Program: “The Pennsylvania Caregiver Support Program works to ease the stresses of caregiving by focusing on the well-being of the caregiver.  The program provides the primary caregiver with reimbursement for out-of-pocket costs associated with caregiving, such as respite, caregiving-related services and supplies.  The program also offers education, training, counseling, and more.
    • The program is administered by your local Area Agency on Aging. Each caregiver is assigned a care manager who will come to the care receivers' home, conduct a comprehensive assessment of the needs of the caregiver, provide support, and work with them to develop a person-centered plan of care.”
  • Caregiver Support Webinar Series: This series provides educational information and self-care strategies for caregivers. 
  • Caregiver Action Network: This organization provides support to caregivers. 
  • Family Resource Network: This organization provides support for family members, significant persons, professionals, and others supporting someone with a behavioral health disorder. To learn more, please visit: https://frnfamilies.org/
  • Family Caregiver Alliance
  • AARP Caregiver Resources
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