Financial Empowerment Among Colorado’s Informal Caregivers

Informal caregivers provide care across the lifespan. They are early childhood caregivers providing care outside of a licensed setting, or commonly known as family, friend, and neighbor (FFN) care and can be paid or unpaid. Informal caregivers are also people caring for older adults outside of a formal, paid setting, referred to as unpaid caregivers.

Not only is the financial well-being of informal caregivers important to their quality of life, but the financial well-being of caregivers ripples into our communities and the state’s overall well-being. As the need for care continues to grow, and more formal settings are unable to meet that need, informal caregivers play a crucial role in filling this gap. Informal caregivers are important pieces of the puzzle in allowing parents to go to work, educating young children, and ensuring older adults are aging in their community of choice.

However, data collected from Bell surveys indicate that informal caregivers often are in precarious economic situations with limited flexibility to cover unexpected costs today and little to no savings or assets to invest in the future. These realities jeopardize our ability to provide accessible and quality care to Coloradans across the lifespan. This brief will review financial well-being measures of informal caregivers and how the state’s efforts can support this critical population with reverberating positive impacts for the state.