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Where to Find Scholarships for Caregivers

Several companies and nonprofits offer financial support for family caregivers pursuing educational opportunities 

spinner image Scholarships for Caregivers
Some scholarships are awarded twice a year and cover tuition, books and supplies.
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Family caregiving can be expensive — and not just in out-of-pocket costs. Many caregivers set aside personal and career goals to focus on the unpredictable, unpaid demands of caring for loved ones in their time of need. 

If you’re a family caregiver, young or old, seeking higher education or a learning adventure, there’s good news: Financial aid for caregivers is available, if you know where to look.

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A number of nonprofit organizations, companies and institutions of higher learning offer grants and scholarships to benefit caregivers seeking additional education and training at accredited universities, colleges or trade schools. 

The scholarships below could help you get started on moving closer to your goals. Applying may involve writing an essay and filling out some forms, but the reward could be well worth the time and effort. Good luck! 

180 Medical Ron Howell Caregiver College Scholarship

180 Medical, an online seller of catheters and other supplies for people living with paralysis, created this award to benefit primary, unpaid in-home caregivers planning to attend college for their associate, undergraduate or graduate degree. (Medical students and professional caregivers are not eligible.)

The scholarship, named for 180 Medical’s former president, offers $1,000 annually to one student caregiver. The company also has a medical scholarship program for full-time college students living with spinal cord injuries or certain spinal disorders.

How to apply: Applications are closed for the 2022 scholarship but will reopen for next year's award Jan. 1. Email for more information.  

Aging Matters Scholarship, which offers local guides and other information on services for older adults, awards an annual $1,500 scholarship for tuition, books, board and other expenses to a college student who is caring for an aging loved one, works in aging services or intends to pursue a career that will have an impact on the older population. 

Incoming freshmen or continuing students at accredited two- or four-year colleges or universities are eligible.

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How to apply: Applications can be filled out online. You must submit an essay on why “Aging Matters.” Applications for the next award are being accepted until May 15, 2023. 

Cariloop’s Caregiver Scholarship

Cariloop, a Dallas-based company that offers coaching and support services for family caregivers, funds two scholarships worth $2,500 each to help students pursue higher education while caring for an aging, ill or disabled loved one. 

The Cariloop scholarship is awarded through, a platform for donors to create cause-based scholarships, fellowships and grants. Awards are applied directly to winners’ tuition via their institutions’ finance offices, but will also work with winners to apply funds to qualified non-tuition expenses.

How to apply: You can apply through Applicants are required to submit an essay of 400 to 600 words on how the caregiving experience has shaped their goals, journey and identity. The deadline is Oct. 1, and winners will be announced Oct. 31.

Hope for the Warriors Spouse/Caregiver Scholarship Program

Hope for the Warriors, a national support organization for service members, veterans and their families, offers scholarships to celebrate and reward military spouses and caregivers aiding post-9/11 veterans who are disabled or suffered combat-related injuries.

Scholarships are awarded twice a year and subsidize books, tuition and supplies to attend accredited U.S. colleges, universities or trade schools for associate, bachelor’s, graduate or postgraduate degrees. Since 2006, the program has awarded more than 140 scholarships totaling more than $412,000. 

How to apply: Submit documentation of the veteran’s proof of service, injury or death; one original essay on an assigned topic; and an optional letter of recommendation. You'll also need to fill out a questionnaire. The application period for spring 2023 opens Aug. 1. You can request a form through the organization’s “Connect to Services” portal or email for information.

Pillars of Strength Scholarship Program

Offered by the University of Maryland Global Campus (UMGC), a distance-learning program serving working adults and military service members, Pillars of Strength scholarships cover tuition, fees and course-required resources for students working as caretakers of recovering veterans and service members who were wounded, injured or became ill in the line of duty after Sept. 11, 2001.

You must have a high school diploma or GED and be enrolled or planning to enroll in a degree or certificate program at UMGC, with a minimum course load of six credits per term for undergraduates and three credits per term for graduate students.

How to apply: You are required to provide documentation of your caregiver status, a signed letter of reference from someone familiar with your circumstances and qualifications, and short essays on your achievements, interests, goals and caregiving experience. You must also fill out a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. Applications for the 2023-2024 academic year will be accepted from Nov. 11, 2022, through April 30, 2023.

Road Scholar Caregiver Grant

The travel and education nonprofit Road Scholar (formerly known as Elderhostel) offers up to $1,500 for older family caregivers to put toward one of the group’s learning adventures. Amy Goyer, AARP’s national family and caregiving expert, took part in a Road Scholar trip to New Mexico in 2015 and wrote about the experience.

Eligibility extends to people age 50-plus who are or were providing daily, unpaid care to an ill or disabled family member (spouse, parent, adult child, partner or sibling). This can include loved ones receiving home care, hospice care, nursing services or living in a long-term care facility, or who have died in the last two years.

The grant can be applied to Road Scholar learning adventures in the U.S. or Canada that cost up to $2,000. Participants must cover travel costs and pay a deposit.

How to apply: Applications must identify the Road Scholar program you wish to attend. The organization recommends applying at least three months prior to that program's start date. You must also provide information on your caregiving expenses and include a personal statement of 250 to 500 words detailing your experiences and reasons for requesting financial aid. Road Scholar says the essay is used to determine need and can be a decisive factor between one application or another. Expect a decision in four to six weeks. 

Student Caregiver Scholarship

Nelson Elder Care Law, a Georgia firm specializing in elder law and estate planning, awards an annual $1,000 scholarship to a student who dedicates free time to caring for older adults — for example, by serving as caregiver for a family member or volunteering at a long-term care facility.

Eligibility extends to undergraduate and graduate students at a U.S. institution of higher learning and high school seniors who will be enrolled in college before the application deadline of Sept. 30. A grade point average of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale is required. 

How to apply: Submit a current academic transcript; an up-to-date resume; and a 750-word essay describing your motivation to care for an older family member or volunteer to serve older adults, and how the experience has affected your life and inspired career goals. Email the documents to with your full name and “2022 Student Caregiver Scholarship” in the subject line. The deadline is Sept. 30.

UCB Family Epilepsy Scholarship

UCB, a global biopharmaceutical company, offers education funding to people living with epilepsy and their family members and caregivers. The program will award 33 scholarships of $5,000 to $10,000 this year, and since 2005 has provided more than $2.8 million in scholarships to more than 550 undergraduate and graduate students.

How to apply: Applicants are required to submit a one-page personal statement and three letters of recommendation. The deadline to apply for the next round of awards is March 15, 2023. Email for more information.

Editor's note: This article was originally published Feb. 6, 2017. It has been updated with more recent information on caregiver scholarship programs and additional listings.

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