When COVID-19 broke out, Max Mayblum was caring for his aunt living with cancer, as well as his grandparents. Given his background in health care, he thought he’d be prepared to be a caregiver. The role was more difficult than he expected, he said, especially navigating the benefits his family needed. He also realized millions of Americans caring for their elders were going through the same thing.
The experience inspired him to launch Givers in 2021, a savings and support platform for family caregivers that aims to help them get access to benefits available to them and connect them with discounted products and services.
“This came from helping my own family through a family caregiving journey and seeing how difficult it was to qualify for programs and figure out what we are eligible for, especially when you’re tired and don’t necessarily have the time or energy to go through all the paperwork,” Mayblum said.
Billions of dollars are locked up behind paperwork and eligibility criteria, he said, that are too difficult to access for family caregivers. Givers hopes to fast-track the process.
The app also offers opportunities for family caregivers to virtually interact with each other and access support from social workers.
“Family caregivers are one of the most underpaid workforces in our society today,” he said, “so being able to bring dollars to the pockets of family caregivers will enable them to feel a little less stressed.”
Caregivers can access the app online by signing up and creating an account. After logging in, members are issued a debit card to hold all their care-related expenses. Givers analyzes spending and profile data to match them to programs for which they’re eligible.
There’s no upfront cost to join Givers, and according to Mayblum, the only time family caregivers pay is when the app successfully helps them save money, taking a 40% fee of the savings it finds for members.
“We split the savings on the back end, and that’s the lifeblood of our company,” he explained.
So far, users have responded positively to the app, and although they come for the financial help, they stay for the community support. Mayblum said Givers is onboarding more than 1,000 users a month.
“The financial pressures are extremely intense, as are the emotional and educational components of family caregiving,” he said. “Our version of success is a world in which family caregivers are recognized for all the work they are doing and are compensated as such.”