SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — The lack of caregivers is a growing problem not just here in the Ozarks but around the country.

Home Instead provides funds, care and services to aging adults around the world. Chris Blaine, the owner of the Springfield Home Instead location, said the company is looking to hire 30 part-time or full-time professionals in the surrounding areas during a job fair at the Springfield Library Center. The job fair will begin at 11 a.m. and conclude at 2:30 p.m.

Nationally, the company is looking to hire 25,000 caregivers this year.

“First and foremost, we are looking for people that have a heart for caring for other people,” Blaine said. “That’s really the core of what we do.”

He says ever since the pandemic, the industry as a whole has seen fewer and fewer workers in the field but more and more people in need of care.

According to the American Association for Retired Persons, the workforce will need to grow by 30% to accommodate the baby boomers who need the extra support.

According to Home Instead, 11,000 baby boomers turn 65 daily in the U.S., which is why the need to hire 25,000 caregivers is critical. The company would like to have them by the end of the year.

“You got an aging population,” Blaine said. “You got a lot of folks that wanna stay home. If you combine those two things together, that’s why caregiving is something that’s really needed.”  

The population in Springfield around the year 2000 had just eclipsed 150,000 and 23 years later, it grew to 172,000 people.