CONNIE SISKOWSKI, RN, Ph.D.
Connie Siskowski, RN, PhD – educated at Johns Hopkins, Montclair State and New York University, she obtained her PhD in 2004 from Lynn University. Connie never expected her doctoral research to uncover the high prevalence of family health situations and concomitant caregiving with detrimental academic effects upon children in Palm Beach County.
Her broad background in healthcare and dedication to diminishing caregiver struggles led to the 1998 establishment of a nonprofit organization which has transformed itself to become what is now the American Association for Caregiving Youth (AACY), headquartered in Boca Raton, FL.
AACY includes the Caregiving Youth Project of Palm Beach County, the first US program to support the hidden population of child caregivers; a growing AACY Affiliate Network of collaborating partnerships; and the Caregiving Youth Institute that serves to C.A.R.E. – Connect, Advocate, Research and Educate. Membership in its Caregiving Youth Research Collaborative, in partnership with the University of NC in Chapel Hill, includes professionals from nine universities across the US.
The needs of caregiving youth are beyond the purview of any one system so AACY integrates healthcare, education and the community (body, mind and spirit) to provide a strong foundation for the youth and their families.
Connie has contributed to multiple journal articles about youth caregivers as well as a book, I’m a Teen Caregiver. Now What? Included among multiple awards she has received are the lifetime Ashoka Fellowship, Purpose Prize, Distinguished Alumna Award from Johns Hopkins University, Top Ten CNN Hero for 2012, the Listen, Learn and Care Award from the Office Depot Foundation and a star on Boca Raton’s Walk of Recognition. In addition to many local and state activities, she is now on the faculty of the national Family RAISE Caregiving Council to give caregiving youth a voice.