“Invent@NMU helped my nonprofit go public in a professional, smooth, and successful way. Without them, I would have done my best and stumbled my way into the roll out, but I avoided that with excellent teamwork from them.”
-Eric Paad, Founder of Caregiver Incentive Project
Eric Paad, founder of Caregiver Incentive Project, grew up on a dairy farm near Alpena, Michigan. He served in the United States Air Force for twenty-two years and retired from the military in 1986. On Thanksgiving day in 1989, his daughter Dorothy was born two months prematurely. Eric and his wife, Alice, provided 100% of her care up until she turned 27. Dorothy requires care 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Now at age 29, she lives in an apartment near Northern Michigan University’s campus, where she attends college. Dorothy has three in-home caregivers who, along with her parents, provide her care.
After a few years of brainstorming and bouncing ideas off of close friends and family, Eric began working on starting this nonprofit in February 2018. Over a year later, he sat down with staff at Invent@NMU and began finalizing his project. Invent@NMU helped Eric with marketing, a launch plan, event development and sharing his story with the media through press releases and media alerts. He was happy to say that he received a lot of positive attitude and support from the team at Invent@NMU.
In June of 2019, Caregiver Incentive Project (CIP) launched. CIP aims to educate the public regarding the crisis, provide financial incentives in the way of scholarships and stipends, and provide training for new caregivers. Its mission as a nonprofit organization is to end the shortage of qualified in-home caregivers. With the efforts beginning in Marquette and a plan to expand nationally, CIP is working closely with established agencies that serve disabled individuals, the elderly, medically fragile individuals, and others requiring in-home care. Currently, there aren’t enough people entering into the field, and there is no clear career path, training, or accreditation for in-home caregivers. CIP is working to spread awareness about this national crisis and taking steps in the right direction to fix the issue.