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Chattanooga entrepreneur gets a boost from LAUNCH

Chattanooga entrepreneur gets a boost from LAUNCH (Photo: WTVC)

Christopher Chaney is beginning a second career after a loved one's illness set him on an unexpected path.

"We're excited about his business and family care giving is such a reality that when he came to our office I still remember I said there's nobody who doesn't get it." LAUNCH Chattanooga Vice President of Operations, Marco Perez said.

Over the last few months Mr. Perez has become a mentor for Christopher Chaney. Christopher came to LAUCH because he wanted to start a program to help caregivers.

"I realized this probably about three months ago that I'm actually a third generation caregiver," Mr. Chaney said. "My great grandmother, when she was alive, I remember taking up her plate and brushing her hair. That's a form of care giving."

Mr. Chaney was also a caregiver to his grandmother and recently his mother.

Christoper told us he worked for TVA for twenty-two years, and when his mother became ill with Alzheimer's he left his job to care for her full time.

"There was a sense of denial that mom is getting old. She's going through some things. The decision making is just a little different, and that's all a factor in getting older," Mr Chaney said. "I was in denial, but I'll never forget when the doctor said 'Hey, your mom requires attention 24/7."

Mr. Chaney was his mothers full time caregiver until she passed away. He learned a lot of difficult lessons during that time.

"You have to have support because without support you lose yourself in the process. You don't take care of you. You don't take care of your health, and there's a part of you that dies in the process, and that's part of the reason why our corporation created The Family Care Living Program."

That program is why Christopher came to LAUNCH. His goal is to provide inspiration, training, and help to other caregivers.

"We do keynote speeches, workshops, wellness fairs, webinars, and training," Mr. Chaney said. "We also offer CEU training for healthcare professionals, and then we've got the Mama Peaches movement."

Mama Peaches is what Christopher called his mother. He wrote a book based on the stories she told him. He's now working on a second Mama Peaches book.

Christopher now wants to tell others about the lessons he learned hoping that other people can learn from what he's been through.

"Christopher's exceptional so I look forward, I really do, and I've told him this from the beginning I look forward to seeing how far he can go," Mr. Perez said.

Christopher also organized Memory Sunday in Chattanooga. Memory Sunday is A National Alzheimer's and Care giving Awareness Campaign for African-American Congregations.

Ten local churches are involved, and it will take place on June 11th.

Christopher is also hosting free care giving workshops during the month of June.

To contact Christopher Chaney for more information on any of these programs or his books visit his website.

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