Children climbing a rock wall at a fitness park.
SAN ANTONIO, TX - SEPTEMBER 4 & 5:  on Thursday, September 5, 2019 in San Antonio, Texas. (Brandon Wade/Getty Images for RWJF)


Caregiving makes almost everything in this country possible. All caregivers want the time and resources to give their families the best opportunities, but their contributions often go unrecognized and unrewarded. We work to ensure caregivers have the resources they need to raise healthy, thriving children.

A woman and child pick fresh fruits and vegetables from a New York City Green Cart in Jamaica, Queens, NYC.

Care and Our Shared History 

Caregiving has the power to uplift and transform communities. But for centuries it has been unfairly relegated to women, and especially women of color, without appropriate recognition of or compensation for their work. This is due to our country's history of slavery and persists today through societal norms that prioritize economic productivity. Together, we can transform this narrative and recognize the immeasurable value and contributions of all caregivers, especially those who have historically been marginalized.

Caring for Caregivers 

To build a Culture of Health, we must create new systems that truly value children and families, and the caregivers who support us all. Providing care has historically, and inequitably, been delegated to women and women of color. But all of us are likely to be caregivers or need care someday—whether to welcome the arrival of a new child, support an ailing family member, or provide care for oneself. Unfortunately, our political and social systems are intentionally designed to only support some of us when we need or provide care.

We must value all caregiving work by providing a livable wage and the full range of benefits to caregivers, including healthcare and paid time off.

Alabama 2019 - Black Belt. Land belonging to Ja'mestican Parham. His great Grandfather bought this land somewhere between 1868 and 1870 (from the Hope family). Originallly $600 was paid for 700 acres. This amount is now down to 200 acres and Ja'mestican beleives it has been taken away immorally over the years by several forces and people. It is now designated as Forest Land and Ja'mestican has planted much of it by hand. His mother Ethel Parham is seen on the right.

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 to better value caregiving and to ensure all families have the resources they need to thrive.

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