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Understanding the impact of caregivers in Iowa

Talk of Iowa, hosted by Charity Nebbe
"There are only four kinds of people in the world: those who have been caregivers, those who are currently caregivers, those who will be caregivers, and those who will need care."
- Rosalynn Carter

Taking care of a family member who needs support can be an act of love, an act of duty, an act of necessity or all three at once. Caregiving can be incredibly stressful and isolating, and it can take a serious emotional and economic toll on the caregiver.

According to a survey conducted by the AARP there are 330,000 unpaid caregivers living in Iowa right now. As our population ages, that number will grow. Their unpaid work had an estimated economic value of $5.2 billion.

On this episode of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe speaks with two caregivers about their experiences. Then Alisha Frady of Connections Area Agency on Aging and Paige Yontz of the AARP join the program to explore the challenges caregivers face, the resources that are available, the gaps in those resources and what could be done to give caregivers the support they need for this essential work.


  • Elise Free, caregiver in Des Moines
  • Jan Blevins, caregiver in Cedar Falls
  • Paige Yontz, State Advocacy Manager, AARP
  • Alisha Frady, Caregiver Specialist, Connections Area Agency on Aging
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Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa
Caitlin Troutman is a talk show producer at Iowa Public Radio