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There are only four kinds of people in the world: those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers, and those who will need caregivers.

Rosalynn Carter

Former U.S. First Lady

Supporting Unpaid Family Caregivers

Illinois Aging Services (IAS) recently received funding from the RRF Foundation for Aging and the IL Department on Aging to create an inclusive, statewide, non-partisan coalition to support unpaid and informal caregivers. The coalition will include unpaid caregivers, advocacy groups & human services organizations, policymakers, employers, unions, disease- specific organizations, policy research groups, health care providers, kinship care providers, representatives of the veterans’ community and LGBTQ community, organizations and individuals supporting people with disabilities and input from the general public.

 This coalition will do the following to support unpaid family caregivers:

  • Discuss the 2021 recommendations from the federal RAISE Family Caregivers Act with stakeholders who currently participate in the national work groups; 
  • Discuss best practices in Illinois and other states; 
  • Identify and promote policy changes to support unpaid caregivers; 
  • Launch a public awareness campaign in Illinois spotlighting caregiving and provide resources to caregivers. 

Informal Caregiving:
By the Numbers

The COVID-19 pandemic has shined a light on the essential role of unpaid, informal caregivers in Illinois and throughout the country and the support they need to care for their families and friends.

Sources: AARP Family Caregiving in IL; NORC at the University of Chicago on behalf of the CDC Foundation and NAC.

Home Caregiver icon

Unpaid, Informal Caregivers Nationwide

1 out of 5 Americans

served as caregivers for family members and/or friends during the pandemic

Informal caregivers provide
30 billion hours
of uncompensated care each year, an average of
24 hours a week

6 out of 10 caregivers

say they need more information and support
Financial Challenges icon

Financial & Health Challenges

29% of caregivers

have struggled financially, including nearly half who lost jobs during the pandemic
Caregivers spend
an average of 26% of their income
on costs around providing care for older adults

6 out of 10 caregivers

consider their situation stressful, and 1 out of 5 report physical strain due to caregiving duties

61% of caregivers’ employment

situations have been negatively impacted
Financial Challenges icon

Illinois Facts

80% of Illinoisians aged 40+

would prefer to be cared for at home by a caregiver if they needed help

47% of voters

in Illinois age 50+ have experience as family caregivers, and of that group, 64% also worked while providing care


Two out of three current and former caregivers worked jobs while they provided care.
  • Caregivers provide companionship (92%),
  • help with errands (90%), transportation (87%),
  • provide complex care including:
  • managing medications (64%),
  • bathing/dressing (52%), and
  • medical/nursing support suppport (51%).

6 out of 10

used their own money to provide care.

News & Events

    Funding Provided By

    If you and/or your organization are interested in supporting this effort please email Amy Brennan.

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