We Are Seeking Innovative Approaches to Reducing Burdens That Family Caregivers Face Every Day.

Caregiving is an important component of care for family members who are terminally ill, severely disabled or have chronic conditions such as memory disorders, cancer strokes or pulmonary disease. The Caring for Caregivers Challenge is a national challenge designed to motivate the development of novel, comprehensive approaches that enable family caregivers to provide in-home care of adult family members in a manner that:

Improves the quality of life

for both caregivers and care recipients

Provides a holistic approach

to healthy, happy lifestyles for caregiving families.

Reduces stress, burnout, and financial burdens

associated with caring for adult family members

Is affordable and accessible for everyone

and connected into community resources

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Participant Benefits

  • Potential to win up to $100,000 in non-dilutive funding to further expand your solution

  • Ability to form strategic partnerships that result in a comprehensive approach that addresses multiple facets of family-based caregiving

  • Opportunity to pilot your solution in partnership with GuideWell

  • Access to mentors and subject matter experts in the health care industry

  • No cost or equity requirements to participate (other than travel to program activities)

  • Opportunity for potential industry media exposure in print, TV and digital marketing outlets.

Applications Closed

Family Caregiving - A Silent Burden

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) defines family caregiving as unpaid assistance to family members who are unable to function independently. Such caregiving is an important component of care for family members who are terminally ill, severely disabled, or have chronic conditions such as memory disorders, cancer, strokes or pulmonary diseases.

  • More than 43.5 million adults in the United States provide unpaid care to a family member.
  • Of these, 34.2 million care for a senior family member over the age of 50.
  • An additional 5.2 million care for a partner, adult child or other adult family member under age 50.

It is highly likely these statistics will rapidly increase over the next two decades due to the aging U.S. population and the increase in single-parent homes.

People or families that actively provide long-term care for aging, chronically ill or disabled adult family members face a broad array of challenges within their daily lives. These challenges include stress and burnout, financial burdens, career sacrifices, sleep deprivation, depression, isolation and lack of privacy.

  • On average, a family caregiver will spend more than 24 hours each week providing care to a loved one.
  • 75% of these family caregivers are also working.

Many employers are not aware of the enormous costs of this hidden “care economy,” which impacts employee productivity and increases employee turnover due to inflexible work policies or lack of relevant benefits for family caregivers and their families.

*Statistics are sourced from a 2015 study done by the National Alliance for Caregiving. 

How the Challenge Works

$100,000 Per Winner Across Three Phases

The Caring for Caregivers Challenge consists of three phases that award up to four winners with $50,000-$100,000 in non-dilutive funding. In addition, two finalists may be provided with opportunities to pilot their solutions in collaboration with GuideWell.


Application Phase (Sept-Dec 2019)

Up to four applicants or teams will be competitively selected, and each will receive $50,000 to assist with costs associated with the validation phase of the Challenge. Applications can be submitted between September 18 and November 15, 2019. The four finalists will be selected no later than December 13th.

Validation Phase (Jan-Mar 2020)

Selected applicants will have three months to validate the market viability of their proposed approach by demonstrating the capability to sustainably scale their approach with a large population of caregivers. GuideWell will work with each participant to define the validation criteria that should be met. Participants selected for the validation phase will be awarded $50,000.

Pilot Phase (Apr-Aug 2020)

Up to two finalists that successfully complete the validation phase may have the opportunity to collaborate with GuideWell to conduct a pilot of their solution. Pilot opportunities will be limited to finalists that address a specific market opportunity that aligns with GuideWell’s strategic direction. Finalists selected to participate in the Pilot Phase will be awarded an additional $50,000.

Areas of Focus

The Caring for Caregivers Challenge seeks connected, comprehensive approaches to solving critical challenges that are commonly faced by family caregivers. There will be two award categories under this challenge.

Care for Adults 65+

Care for Adults 65+

Approaches that serve family caregivers caring for senior family members over age 65




Care for Adults 18-65

Care for Adults 18-65

Approaches that serve family caregivers caring for partners or adult children under age 65 who are mentally disabled, permanently homebound due to a physical disability, terminally ill or chronic disease.

The most promising approaches will focus on providing affordable, accessible solutions that improve the quality of life for family caregivers, the loved ones they are caring for and other family members living in the same home as the caregiver.

Preference will be given to approaches that demonstrate a strong potential to provide innovative cost effective, accessible and holistic solutions and have the potential to assist family caregivers across diverse populations and communities across the United States.

Applicants should be able to address a minimum of two of the following challenge areas:

  • Novel approaches for reducing family caregiver stress
  • Social inclusion for both caregivers and care recipients
  • Provision of financial, legal or health care advisory assistance
  • Employer-based solutions/resources to assist employee-caregivers
  • Increasing independence for family care recipients
  • Enabling healthy, happy lifestyles for caregiving families
  • Developing healthy habits for caregiving families – nutrition, exercise, social integration
  • Improving accessibility: healthy foods, prescriptions, other supplies
  • Affordable, holistic care for family care recipients

Eligibility Criteria

GuideWell is seeking innovative companies or non-profits with programs, platforms, technology systems or services that have the potential to provide a comprehensive resource network for family caregivers.

The most promising approaches should have the potential to eliminate critical challenges family caregivers face every day and empower them to affordably care for their adult family members.

The Caring for Caregivers Challenge is open to:

  • For-profit and non-profit organizations that earn a minimum of $250,000 in revenues or $500,000 in seed capital raised and verifiable customer pilot or customer traction.
  • Applicants must be able to demonstrate their ability to develop and sustainably deploy innovative, scalable approaches that support the mental, social and economic health of family caregivers and improve their ability to care for loved ones.

GuideWell believes it “takes a village” to sustainably support family caregivers and single-point solutions may not be broad enough to provide comprehensive relief to family caregivers.

  • Team-based applicants must include at least two established corporate/non-profit entities on a team that jointly earned a minimum of $500,000 in 2018 revenues or $500,000 in seed capital raised and verifiable customer pilot or customer traction.
  • Applicants may consist of a team of diverse organizations that come together to jointly develop novel, scalable approaches.
  • Eligible team members can include innovative for-profit companies, non-profit organizations and individual subject matter experts.
  • Academic institutions and public-sector organizations are not directly eligible, but individuals from these organizations can participate as subject matter experts.

As a condition of moving forward into the pilot stage of the Challenge, GuideWell may request that high-potential individual applicants come together to form a team or join an applicant team after the initial application window closes.

Judging Criteria

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Market Scalability

Potential to have deep impact across diverse communities and caregiver populations

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Feasability of the Approach

Can the proposed approach be developed in a timely, cost-effective manner?

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Does the approach directly address key challenges faced by caregivers in an affordable, accessible manner?

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Team Qualifications

Is the leadership of the team qualified to deploy the approach at scale?

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We are accepting applications through November 15, 2019!

About GuideWell Innovation

GuideWell Innovation, a subsidiary of GuideWell Mutual Holding Corporation (GuideWell), drives collaborative innovation for the family of forward-thinking companies that make up GuideWell. Headquartered in Orlando’s Lake Nona Medical City, GuideWell Innovation focuses on transforming the health system into a more integral and useful part of people’s everyday lives by fast tracking the delivery of next generation health solutions. For more information, visit GuideWellInnovation.com.

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