Valuing Caregivers and Families
HEALTHY CHILDREN & FAMILIES
Care makes almost everything else in this country possible. All caregivers want the time and resources to give their families the best opportunities possible, but their vital contribution to this country so often goes unrecognized. We work to recognize the value that we see in all caregivers and in all families as they exist, so that they can secure the resources they need to raise healthy, thriving children.
Care and Our Shared History
Caregiving has been highly gendered and racialized in this country for centuries. This marginalization has its origins in slavery, continued through societal norms that only value economic production, and remains part of current structures and policies. Our political and social systems have not valued care because it has been delegated to those of us who have historically not been seen as deserving: women and especially women of color.
Caring for Caregivers
To build a Culture of Health, we must create new systems that truly value children and families, and the caregivers that hold them both. Providing care has historically, and inequitably, been delegated to women and women of color. But all of us will be a caregiver or need care some day—whether to welcome the arrival of a new child, support an ailing family member, or provide care for oneself. But when that time comes, our political and social systems are intentionally designed to only support some of us.
We must value all caregivers and their work appropriately by providing a livable wage and full range of benefits including healthcare and paid time off.
At RWJF we are working alongside others to bring these visions to reality.
- We support research on care and caregiving, and how our society can better support these critical functions
- Our work aims to shift inaccurate notions of what constitutes a family, and ensure that families of all kinds, especially those that may not conform to antiquated cultural norms, are seen, understood, and valued.
- We support advocates pushing for changes to better center our caregiving systems on the inherent deservingness of all families to have the resources they need to thrive.
Related News and Insights
Read expert perspectives and the latest research from RWJF to explore the opportunities and complexities of this topic.
A Generational Opportunity to Invest in Our Children
Relatives Raising Children: Why is it so Difficult?
Four Ways to Support Men in Solving America’s Caregiving Crisis