CAREGIVING YOUTH INSTITUTE
AACY is a leader in Caregiving Youth issues in the United States. The Caregiving Youth Institute (CYI), a division of the American Association of Caregiving Youth® seeks to raise awareness of the multi-system needs of all caregiving youth and provide national solutions, align with international efforts, and support this huge, hidden population through the multiple initiatives of Connection, Advocacy, Research, and Education (C.A.R.E.). We connect people who care with each other.
AACY CYI fosters connections between Caregiving Youth, their families, advocates, the media, and US organizations that support this hidden population based on specific health circumstances. By facilitating these connections, the AACY team ensures that every caregiver aged 18 and under is supported and has access to available resources throughout the United States. Our work with direct services, curriculum, education, research, analysis, published materials, and working with national and international partners is successful.
AACY advocacy informs and educates U.S. federal, state, and local legislators and other influential individuals about the important role of Caregiving Youth in society, including recognizing their current and future contributions as educated adults and potentially future healthcare workers. Ultimately, policy changes and appropriations made at the local, state, and federal levels should include provisions for Caregiving Youth just like adult family caregivers. The goal is national recognition and awareness of their vital role in healthcare delivery, with long-term recognition as care providers.
The research on Caregiving Youth in the US is growing. AACY established the Caregiving Youth Research Collaborative, a US-focused research network that aims to advance understanding of the lives of Caregiving Youth and their families. The goals are to facilitate new studies, research, and publications on this population. Multidisciplinary professionals in social sciences, social work, nursing, medicine, psychology, and others contribute to these efforts, leading to a greater understanding of this significant population. Example of a publication by members of the Caregiving Youth Research Collaborative below:
Learning about Caregiving Youth is a priority for the public, educators, and healthcare professionals. Education about this issue is achieved by expanding the affiliate network and forming partnerships with healthcare systems, healthcare- related companies, universities, and others to get needed support for the kids. Outreach includes partnerships, conferences, podcasts, video productions, peer-reviewed journal publications, social media, press outreach, formal presentations, and connecting with others.
- AACY launched Caregiving Youth Action Day USA:
AACY spearheaded Caregiving Youth Action Day USA. In collaboration with Carers Trust UK and US partners, they held the first-ever international recognition day for Caregiving Youth in the United States. The initiative aligns with worldwide efforts to raise awareness and outreach for young carers and their families.
- US Recognition of Caregiving Youth – H.Con.Res.114 – 117th Congress:
AACY’s efforts made history in the US Caregiving Youth movement in 2022 as Congress recognized Caregiving Youth for the first time. Representatives Lois Frankel, Barbara Lee, and Maria Elvira Salazar introduced a resolution designating November 13-19 as National Caregiving Youth Week, recognizing the sacrifices of youth caring for loved ones. Co-sponsoring representatives from California, Florida, Texas, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and North Carolina joined.
- US Government Accountability Survey:
AACY’s initiatives led to Congresswoman Lois Frankel, Reps. Barbara Lee and Bobby Scott to recommend a national study on caregiving youth to the Government Accountability Office (GAO). This study will help expedite programs and funding for over 5.4 million Caregiving Youth in the US. The study is approved, and we await its completion, which will assist in additional funding.
- Caregiving Youth Institute Conference:
The Caregiving Youth Institute Conference brings together researchers, professionals, policymakers, educators, and caregivers to address the unique needs of Caregiving Youth. The conference features keynote speakers, workshops, and panel discussions on topics related to Caregiving Youth. Attendees network with peers and experts in the field and learn about new research, resources, and best practices.
There are over 5.4M Caregiving Youth in the United States. Caregiving Youth are young people aged 18 and under who provide significant assistance or care to a family member with a chronic illness, disability, mental health condition, or frailty due to aging. (They are called Young Carers in the UK.)
Many thanks to our team, volunteers, members of the CYI Research Collaborative, board, donors, advisory council, parents, school administrators, teachers, and all who champion Caregiving Youth. You make a difference.
We invite you to join us. We’ve set ambitious goals and actively seek major funding, partnerships, and affiliate opportunities to benefit kids across Palm Beach County, Florida, and the rest of the United States. Reach out and connect with us.
Our programs rely on contributions from our community.
If you are able to donate to American Association of Caregiving Youth, please do so here.
If you are able to volunteer for our local programs or are interested in working with us anywhere in the US, contact us here.