15 Thoughtful Gifts a Caregiver Will Love and Appreciate
Say “thank you” to a family or paid caregiver with these brilliant gift ideas! These gifts for caregivers will help you express gratitude and appreciation to someone caring for a loved one. I was inspired to research these gift ideas during my work with the Alzheimer’s Society (I facilitated support groups for family caregivers).
Real Simple is a bestselling magazine subscription on Amazon, simply because it’s excellent. A print subscription along with a Starbucks or other coffee shop gift card will encourage your caregiver to take time off to rejuvenate herself. What hobbies or passions does your caregiver pursue? I encourage a magazine gift subscription that is more fun than serious, something that can help your caregiver escape and relax. After all, that’s part of self-care! If you aren’t sure what magazine she would like, take a look at the Most Popular Magazine Subscriptions on Amazon.
The following gifts for caregivers practical and valuable because they focus on time, self-care, and freedom. Often the best way to say thank you to a family or paid caregiver is to give them the gift of time and freedom. Encourage caregivers – even paid caregiving staff – to take care of themselves. Caregivers have to stay emotionally healthy and physically strong, so they don’t burn out. Both paid and family caregivers will appreciate gifts that support their daily work and encourage them to keep their spirits high. These gift ideas for caregivers are about taking care of themselves so they have lots of energy, joy, patience, and love to give.
While you’re scrolling through this list of gifts for caregiving family members or staff, remember that the role of caregiver is demanding physically, psychologically, emotionally and financially. Caregiving is a heavy job – even if one is getting paid to do the work.
If you’re searching for gifts for someone in your family who is caring for a loved one, take time later on to read through a few caregiver support tips. For example, learning that family caregivers have a limited availability of community support services can help guide your gift giving decisions.
Okay, on to the fun part…the shopping! 🙂
Thoughtful Gifts a Caregiver Will Love and Appreciate
This is probably the most important gift you can give a caregiver who is actively caring for a family member – or even a paid caregiver (who couldn’t use some time off, now and then?).
A monthly food clubs or weekly food delivery
The Golden State Fruit Monthly Fruit and Cheese Club is a great example of a monthly food subscription that delivers delicious, healthy fruit and cheeses right to the caregiver’s door. I love this gift idea because it’s practical, useful, and valuable – especially for a family caregiver who doesn’t take time to eat.
The best caregiving gift ideas help people save time and money. Monthly food clubs or subscriptions are automatically delivered, and the variety of foods is amazing! I’d go with the healthy Fruit and Cheese Monthly Club, there are also subscriptions that offer wine (also a good choice!), baked goods, chocolate, hot sauces, beer, jelly beans – and even a Cookie of the Month Delivery.
You might also consider a local weekly food delivery from a store in your caregiver’s area. Milk, bread, cheese, coffee, and cereal aren’t exactly exciting gifts for caregivers, but they sure are appreciated.
A touch of beauty
A Thomas Kinkade Gardens of Grace wall calendar is gorgeous reminder of the world beyond the caregiving bubble. Sometimes caregivers find themselves isolated in their own world, and they need to be reminded of the beauty and wonder that exists beyond their role.
Thomas Kinkade, the celebrated Painter of Light, is the most widely collected artist in the world. His tranquil, light-infused paintings affirm the basic values of family, home, faith in God, and the luminous beauty of nature. Kinkade’s calendar is one of those gifts for caregivers that is a daily reminder of your gratitude and appreciation.
The gift of time for self-care
A Starbucks Gift Card will give your caregiver time to do sit and…perhaps just sit at a coffee shop and unwind while she people watches. After jazzing up on java, she might go to a movie, a caregiver support group, a yoga class, or just out for a walk. Encourage her to relax at a coffee shop, take a deep breath, and center herself. Quiet time to read books and magazines is a thoughtful gift for caregivers who rarely take time for themselves.
If the last thing your caregiver needs is coffee because she has trouble sleeping – or she works evening or night shifts – read 14 “Sleepytime” Gifts for Insomniacs and People Who Can’t Sleep. The best gift you can give is a good night’s rest!
The gift of mindful meditations for caregivers
In Meditations for Caregivers: Practical, Emotional, and Spiritual Support for You and Your Family, Barry J. Jacobs and Julia L. Mayer blend emotional and spiritual motivation to minimize the strains while helping caregivers view their work as a mission from the heart.
The chapters in Meditations for Caregivers are organized by themes and include topics such as accepting your feelings, knowing your limits, seeking support, and managing stress. The meditations offer solutions to typical caregiving challenges, provide relief and renewal through mindfulness, and inspire caregivers to find meaning and value in the work they do. This is a gift that will be forever appreciated.
An automatic pill dispenser to make life easy and safe
The LiveFine Automatic Pill Dispenser keeps drug and medication doses locked away until the exact moment they need to be taken. Featuring a timer and alerts, this gift helps caregivers guard against mistaken or forgotten dosages. It also eliminates the need for constant refilling of medication.
This practical gift for caregivers isn’t fancy or cute, but it does provide peace of mind. The alerts are easily programmed to the minute via the LCD interface. And, the patient’s drug regimen can be quickly customized with one of six rotating templates for 1-6 daily doses.
The pill dispenser is one of my most popular gifts on 15 Cheerful Gift Ideas for People With Dementia or Memory Loss.
A collage picture frame for family caregivers
The Wooden Wall Collage Photo Picture Frame is a beautiful gift for caregivers who were close to their patients. This may be a more thoughtful idea for family caregivers, not paid caregivers. I always encourage gift givers to avoid giving gifts that require work, so if you give a caregiver this collage picture frame, make sure you put the photos in yourself! Otherwise, she may never get around to filling and hanging it up.
Remember that the gift you give the person caring for your loved one has to reflect her personality, tastes, habits, and lifestyle. The most thoughtful and meaningful gift ideas take her life and personality into account.
If your caregiver has a birthday coming up, read Thoughtful 40th Birthday Gift Ideas for Women. Most of the ideas can become thoughtful gifts for caregivers in their forties.
Warm scented candles for relaxation
The Votivo Aromatic Breath Of Lavender Candle is an affordable luxury gift for caregivers who enjoy bubble baths and spa treatments. Scented candles can also distract caregivers from unpleasant odors that can accompany the more unsavory tasks of taking care of a loved one’s personal needs.
Whether your caregiver is soaking or unsmelling, grieving or rejoicing, a candle offers peace, warmth, light, and love. It’s a symbol of light and hope, and can bring energy and healing.
Gourmet coffee, tea, or chocolate gift basket
Does your caregiver love to drink coffee or tea, or savor chocolate or pistachio nuts? Go for a gourmet gift basket, such as the Coffee Lovers Care Package Gift Basket. When I facilitated caregiver support groups for the Alzheimer’s Society, our members dove into the coffee and rarely came up for air.
Wine-related gift ideas for caregivers
The Drinking Giraffe Wine Bottle Holder – along with a bottle or two of good red or white wine – is a cheeky gift for caregivers who enjoy a tipple now and then. Graceful, elegant, and funny, this safari-inspired wooden wine holder is an “artistic masterpiece of exquisite originality.”
This wine holder is a light-hearted African safari decoration that’s both useful and destined to delight any caregiver who also fancies herself a wine connoisseur….or just enjoys a nice glass of Merlot or Zinfandel at the end of a tough day taking care of a loved one.
Spa gift basket for caregivers
Art Naturals Bath Bombs Holiday Gift Set for caregivers contains six different types of fizzling bath bombs: Energize, Zen, Wellness, Strength, Yoga and Cozy Night.
Each bath bomb is made of natural clay combined with mineral salts, shea and cocoa butters, sunflower seed oil and baking soda to fizz aches and dry skin away. The formulas are full of antioxidants to cleanse and detox, heal and nourish…which makes this gift for caregivers a relaxing bath aromatherapy that’s fun and easy to use.
I’ve received a couple of “spa days” at wellness centers as gifts, but I prefer bath and beauty gift baskets. Making time to go somewhere to get pampered doesn’t appeal to me – but your caregiver may eagerly welcome the chance to go to a local spa.
A bouquet of beautiful, bright flowers
The Rays of Sunshine Flower Bouquet is a thank you gift for caregivers who have everything they need.
This beautiful ray of sunshine will light up the caregiver’s life – especially if you arrange for a bouquet to be delivered on the first day of every month for six months or a year. This is an example of the monthly gift subscription, which was the first gift for caregivers on this list. A monthly flower delivery is a cheerful, thoughtful gift that keeps on giving.
A “caregiving toolbox” for new caregivers
In The Caregiver’s Toolbox: Checklists, Forms, Resources, Mobile Apps, and Straight Talk to Help You Provide Compassionate Care, Carolyn P. Hartley and Peter Wong offer a complete guide to cool apps and online tools, insider tips on how to reduce caregiving medical bills, privacy rights as a caregiver, where to go for free and low-cost help, and much more. The Caregiver’s Toolbox clearly shows which tools will relieve stress and which ones add anxiety.
This gift for caregivers should be accompanied by something more comforting and supportive. The Caregiver’s Toolbox contains a great deal of information, and isn’t exactly a joyful read! It’s incredibly practical and valuable, but it’s not a walk in the park. If you haven’t read about or don’t understand the stress and challenge of caregiving, perhaps the best “thank you” gift you could give a caregiver is the attempt to understand where she is coming from. How? By reading this book yourself!
A Willow Tree “Just for You” gift idea
The Willow Tree “Just for You” hand carved wood figurine is one of my favorite “thank you gifts.” I love these carvings by Susan Lordi – I have two of them. I’m not a collector of anything cluttery, but these wooden angels are something I gather with glee.
Willow Tree is an intimate line of figurative sculptures that speak in quiet ways to heal, comfort, protect and inspire caregivers. They arrive in a gift box, ready for giving with an enclosure card.
If you didn’t find the right gift for the caregiver on your list – and if your caregiver isn’t a spring chicken – read 27 Gifts That Will Surprise and Delight Your Elderly Parents or Grandparents.
A Long List of Thoughtful Gift Ideas for Caregivers
The Family and Nursing Care website has a long list of different gifts for family caregivers. Here it is, with a link to the full article below.
- Booklet of IOUs for one or more of the following: home-cooked meals, baked goods, respite care, household chores or repairs, yard work, chauffeuring, running errands.
- Answering machine, cordless phone or cell phone.
- Wall calendar with plenty of space for noting appointments.
- Caregiving binder for keeping records and organizing paperwork.
- Membership in a caregivers’ organization or the non-profit organization associated with their relative’s disease (for example, the Alzheimer’s Association or Parkinson Foundation).
- Gift certificate for a home healthcare agency, medical supply store or housecleaning service.
- Book of tickets or gift voucher for accessible transportation, if the care receiver is not able to ride in a car, so they can go out together.
- Inspirational book (choose a collection of verses or short stories if the caregiver does not have much time for reading).
- Subscription to a caregiving periodical, or a magazine that reflects an interest (such as nature) or favorite pastime (gardening, for example).
- Decorative journal for recording their experiences, thoughts and feelings, and a high quality pen that glides smoothly.
- Relaxation tapes or miniature water fountain.
- Bird feeder and seed, or binoculars for bird watching.
- Hobby or craft supplies.
- Writing paper and envelopes, or a set of all-occasion note cards, along with postage stamps.
- Scented items: hand and body lotion, cologne, bar soap, bath salts or shower gel, drawer sachets, potpourri or votive candles.
- Basket of sweets, gourmet coffees and teas, jams and jellies or dried fruit and nuts.
- Gift certificate to a restaurant with takeout and delivery service, a dry cleaner with pickup service or a pharmacy or grocery store that delivers.
- Gift certificate for a massage to help them relax and rejuvenate.
- Two tickets to a cultural event – so a friend can accompany them – and an IOU for respite care.
You can read the full article at Thoughtful Gifts for Caregivers on the Family and Nursing Care website. They add that we should remember that emotional support and your time are the two most valuable gifts you can give a caregiver.
I welcome your thoughts on these thoughtful thank you gifts for caregivers below. I especially welcome your gift ideas, because I’m always looking for more.