The average caregiver who responded to our 2022 survey reported that Jack’s was responsible for 80% of a more than twofold improvement in how equipped they felt in their caregiving role. When we chose the theme of this report – pioneering change – that’s the change we’re talking about. We’re also reinforcing something that even we lose sight of, that in many ways there isn’t another organization like ours anywhere else on earth. We want you to feel like the pioneer that you are because the only Jack’s only exists thanks to you.
There’s a constant tension we feel in being an organization pioneering change. We are proud and at the same time frustrated. Proud to be pioneers yet frustrated that 9 years later most people still aren’t aware of the problem we exist to solve: the “hero fixes it without help” culture so many guys grow up in leads caregivers into a trap, where many years can be wasted.
Both of us fell into that trap and tolerated the misery and isolation for far too long. Both of us found our way out because big-hearted people in the Jack’s community pulled us out. Both of us have fallen back into that trap repeatedly. Behaviors learned over a lifetime take a significant amount of time to unlearn.
Many agencies before us have tried (and some have succeeded) at helping guys escape and avoid the traps. There are plenty of organizations that exist to celebrate and support caregivers that welcome them with open arms. There are plenty of disease-centered communities who strive to help everyone impacted by those illnesses. And every day more and more of those communities are recognizing that caregivers are also impacted by those illnesses in extraordinary ways.
But to our knowledge, we are the only organization laser focused on guys in caregiving roles. We’re the only place where they are the mission. We are proud of our dedication to help men through every phase of their caregiving journey.
In that journey, the biggest challenges lie in the transitions. The transition of becoming a caregiver, especially for the first time, is one. The transition from “actively caregiving” to “active grieving” is another. A less-obvious but still challenging transition is the one from active caregiver to caring for someone who the world sees as “cured.” That’s the transition so many are hoping for, yet it can also be a profound challenge. Like any major crisis, a caregiving experience changes a person. But most of the world struggles to see the new you.
Jack’s has helped so many people since we began in 2014, and we continue to help them every day. We need your help to keep making vital improvements in the lives of caregivers.
Become a member. Become a volunteer. Become a donor. Become the reason we change our culture to one that values, supports, and encourages caregivers.
Richard Anderson & Kyle Woody
Board Chair, Founder & Executive Director (and Caregivers and Sequel Makers)