So many family caregivers are of the “sandwich generation,” ones who juggle childcare and careers, and now care for a sick spouse or aging parent. “They’re the unsung heroes in our society,” Neal says, of the 53 million Americans caring for a loved one, often at great personal sacrifice. He and Eshet launched the pilot program at UNC Chapel Hill, then took it to North Carolina State University, and on to Duke University.
The students they employ, motivated by a genuine desire to help families, provide companionship to the elderly, to spouses with serious illness, or to children with special needs. They log clinical hours in caregiving and earn well above minimum wage: families pay $15 to $18 per hour (a fraction of what most in-home care costs), all of which goes directly to the students