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Caregiver Careers - Become a Caregiver

Find your Why—Become a Caregiver!

· Career development
· A passion to serve
· Flexible schedules
· Variety in daily work
· Health insurance*

*Depends on employer benefits package.

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Caregiving Careers

Each day as a caregiver looks slightly different and includes helping people with daily activities like dressing, cooking, bathing, grocery shopping, and more. Below are the three types of roles as a professional caregiver, the variety of places you can work, and how to get trained and certified.

Home Care Aide

Home care aides provide assistance with daily activities, and companionship to individuals in their own homes, Adult Family Homes, or in Assisted Living facilities.


  1. Training: 75 hours
  2. Exam: Yes
  3. Credential: Yes

Nursing Assistant

Nursing assistants help nurses with patient care like measuring vital signs, maintaining cleanliness, and assisting with daily activities in living facilities, medical facilities, or even in clients’ homes. 


  1. Training: 85 hours
  2. Exam: Yes
  3. Credential: Yes

Family Caregiver

Family caregivers take care of their family members. Through Washington State funding, family caregivers can be compensated for taking care of qualifying family members who choose to stay in their own home.


  1. Training: 35 hours
  2. Exam: No
  3. Credential: No

Make a difference in your community.

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In-home care is providing care in a client’s own home.
Adult Family Homes provide licensed care in a community for 1-8 residents.
Assisted Living Facilities provide licensed care in a community to many residents.

Caregiver Stories

Caregivers find purpose and experience fulfillment as they impact the lives of people they care for.





Join a field where you can make a real difference.

Become a caregiver  ▼


Connect with your local Navigator to get help becoming a caregiver. Also learn about caregiving events, benefits, and openings.

Common Questions

Yes. To become a paid caregiver, individuals must fulfill the required training and pass the exam.

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There are a variety of work settings. Home Care Aides and Nursing Assistants can work in a person’s home, an adult family home, or an assisted living facility. Nursing Assistants can additionally work in skilled nursing facilities and hospitals.

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In addition to being paid, benefits may include flexible schedules, career growth in the healthcare field, health insurance, flexible spending accounts (FSAs), life insurance, and retirement contributions.

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Yes, you can become an in-home caregiver, also referred to as an Individual Provider, and get paid to care for family members or friends if they:

  • Are a Washington State Medicaid client
  • Are not your spouse
  • Will receive care in their own home

Clients can apply online for long-term care and other services at Washington Connection. Clients can apply in person through their local DSHS Home & Community Services Office. Locations can be found at dshs.wa.gov/office-locations, or call (877) 501-2233 for office location information.

Information on becoming a paid caregiver for a family member

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Yes, caregivers must be at least 18 years of age and pass a background check.

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Home Care Aide: The cost and length of training depend on the work setting and employer. The average cost is about $300 - $500 for required training, although check with your employer to see if they offer paid training. There may be other ways to receive help to pay for your training. Check your local WorkSource center to see if money is available.

Nursing Assistants Certified: The cost and length of training depend on which program you choose. The average cost is about $500 - $2,000. Some programs may be available at little to no cost for training and certification.

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Learn More & Get Started

Workforce Navigators across Washington state provide support and guidance to individuals considering a part-time or full-time job in caregiving. Navigators also help connect you with employers in your area.


Get the latest information on caregiver careers.

Find Your Navigator

Contact the Navigator in your region.

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