Family Care Benefits


Bright Horizons logo with sun

Listen to Bright Horizons 9/2/2021 Webinar for GW Employees

Bright Horizons Enhanced Family Care Support

Benefits-eligible faculty and staff have access* to Bright Horizons Enhanced Family Supports™ for our family care benefit to include:

  • Expanded in-center back-up care at both Bright Horizons and KinderCare centers.
  • In-home care for children and adults through Bright Horizons.
  • A new Elder Care program to assist you in developing care plans for aging relatives.
  • Sittercity membership at no cost.
  • Assistance with full-time nanny placement for a discounted cost.
  • Discounts at area child care centers (typically 10%)

*Access to all family care benefits will end on the employee's date of separation from the university.


Visit the GW/Bright Horizons microsite and register to get started. You only need one log-in to access all Bright Horizons' programs. 

Have questions? Or need help logging in? Call 877-BH-CARES (242-2737); consultants are available 24/7/365. 

Registration Step-by-Step Instructions

Back-Up Care Benefits for Your Family

Bright Horizons Back-Up Care™ can support you whether school’s closed, your regular child/adult caregiver is unavailable, or a grandparent needs an extra hand when watching the kids.

Employees have access to in-center back-up care at Bright Horizons and KinderCare centers. Or, you can choose to select in-home back-up care for caregiving in your home.

In-home back-up care is also available for your adult or elder family member in the comfort of his or her own home (or assisted living facility) and is available anywhere in the U.S. within established proximity of Bright Horizons’ in-home care agency partners. Any adult or elder for whom you have care-giving responsibilities is covered.


Back-up care rates are subsidized by GW, you pay only:

  • In-center care costs $10/child/day.

  • In-home care costs $6/hour.

Get Started

Benefits-eligible employees will register on the GW/Bright Horizons Microsite   

Employer Username: GW | Password: Benefits4You
Once you register online, download the App for quick access: Search "back-up care" in the App Store or Google Play.

Back Up Care FAQs


New! Elder Care

Caring for Your Elder Loved Ones Just Got Easier

Whether you need a professional opinion on Mom’s care needs, short-term care for Dad, or guidance throughout an elder family member's caregiving journey, your Bright Horizons® benefits can help. 

Access your benefits (at no cost) to:

  • Manage your caregiving tasks through Bright Horizons Elder Care
    • Work with an experienced Care Coach to get answers to caregiving questions, on-site assessments of a family member's living arrangements, and referrals to local service providers.
    • Centralize information and coordinate schedules with your care planning platform.
    • Keep the family in sync about appointments and needs, by communicating with your Coach and family through the convenient mobile app.
  • Reserve an in-home caregiver through Bright Horizons Back-Up Care.

Family Member Eligibility

Bright Horizons Elder Care can be used for a family member related by blood or marriage, such as a parent, grandparent, aunt/uncle, or cousin. 

To Get Started
Visit the GW/Bright Horizons microsite, log in with your credentials and select Elder Care from the available benefits.

Elder Care FAQs

Sittercity Membership

Bright Horizons Enhanced Family Support comes with free access to a premium Sittercity membership.

Sittercity is an online platform where you can post jobs for child/elder care, dog walkers, and nannies, and connect with interested applicants.

To Get started:

  • Log in to the GW/Bright Horizons Microsite.
  • Jump to the “Search for Sitters, Nannies & Housekeepers” tile.
  • Click “Use It” to access your free membership.
  • After registering online, you can download the Sittercity app to have on-the-go access to your job postings and searches.

Full-Time Nanny Placement

As one of the many parts of your Bright Horizons® benefits, you have discounted access to get high-touch local support with recruiting, vetting, and selecting a nanny who is:

  • Individually matched to your family’s unique needs with the right experience, skills, and availability.
  • Carefully screened with background checks at the state and federal levels.
  • Formally trained in child care, first aid, and CPR.
  • A positive role model and committed to safety and security.
  • Trained as a learning coach to support online instruction (upon request).

Get started in the GW/Bright Horizons Microsite and select the Access Nanny Placement Services tile.


The Family Care program through Bright Horizons offers discounts at several area childcare centers. 

You must first register on the Bright Horizons/GW microsite.

After logging in, click Childcare under Browse My Benefits. Click Find A Center and enter your zipcode. Centers will populate based on your search parameters. For each center listed, you can click "Learn More" and "View Coupon" to see the discount applied. 

In the DC-Metro area, discounts are available at most Kindercare, Winwood, and Nobel Learning communities among many others.

Have questions? Or need help logging in? Call 877-BH-CARES (242-2737); consultants are available 24/7/365.


Other area discounts: 

Montessori Kids Universe Ashburn

All GWU faculty and staff receive a 20% discount on tuition at Montessori Kids Universe in Ashburn, VA (PDF). For more information, please contact the facility at 571-365-0050 or email [email protected].

The Goddard School of Ashburn

The Goddard School of Ashburn offers GW employees a special 10% discount on tuition on a first-come first-served-basis. For more information, please contact Mrs. Madhu Govil at 703-724-0601.


Health Advocate: Navigating the Medical Maze

Caring for an elderly parent or loved one can be a daunting task. The Health Advocate benefit, paid by GW, offers a team of Personal Health Advocates (PHAs), typically registered nurses, supported by medical directors and benefits and claims specialists, to help you and your family ease the burden of caregiving.

Here’s how:

  • Locate in-home care, adult day care, assisted living and long-term care

  • Research transportation to appointments

  • Arrange appointments with hard-to-reach specialists

  • Schedule second opinions

  • Interpret doctor’s explanations and instructions

  • Find community support services

  • Coordinate care among providers

  • Assist with understanding and enrolling in Medicare

GW's Wellbeing Hotline: Getting Support for Your Emotional and Everyday Needs

GW's Wellbeing Hotline is a GW paid benefit provided to help all faculty and staff, as well as their household members, by providing personalized assistance with life’s most important issues. A Wellbeing Hotline specialist will speak with you to assess your family member’s specific care needs and refer you to providers who can best help, whether it is an adult day care center or an in-home care provider. GW's Wellbeing Hotline can also provide personal referrals and information to assist with a wide variety of adult caregiving issues, including:

  • Community services

  • Discharge planning

  • Emergency and respite care

  • Emergency response systems

  • Home health care

  • Hospice services

  • Housing

  • Legal and financial issues

  • Long-term care facilities

  • Long-term care insurance

  • Meal delivery programs

  • Residential care facilities

  • Retirement communities

  • Transportation services

  • Senior centers

  • Support groups


Caring for a loved one can be challenging and can take a major toll on your physical and mental health. Whether it's navigating the medical world, dealing with relationship challenges, or handling the stress of juggling work and family, sometimes it helps to talk with someone experienced in the struggles of being a caregiver. You and members of your household can contact the Wellbeing Hotline 24/7 to identify and address concerns, develop an action plan, and receive referrals. As part of this benefit, you and your household members can also take advantage of five in-person counseling sessions per issue. This can be valuable for any member of your household, and it's completely free.

GW's Wellbeing Hotline also provides targeted information and interactive tools, including webinars, provider searches, and discounts, to further help with caregiving issues. Call 866-522-8509 (or 888-879-8274 for TTY service) any time of the day or night to discuss your needs with a specialist.

Adult Care Resources

Below is a list of programs and resources available to you as a GW employee, as well as links to external sites that provide valuable information.

Family Leave

If you have worked for GW for at least 12 months and have been paid for a minimum of 1,000 hours of work over the last year, you may be eligible for Family and Medical Leave. Under the DC Family and Medical Leave Act, you are eligible for up to 16 workweeks of unpaid leave to care for a family member with a serious health condition.

To learn more about your right under both the Federal and DC Family and Medical Leave Act, contact GW Benefits.

Legal and Financial Resources

If you are caring for an older loved one, you may need to help him or her organize their personal, legal or financial affairs. Though discussing these issues can be difficult, it is imperative that you do so, particularly while your loved one is still healthy. Employees who have enrolled in GW's Legal Resources benefit have access to a network of lawyers who can help you create a will, trust, power of attorney, and other important legal documents.

Not enrolled in Legal Resources? Contact GW's Wellbeing Hotline to get legal guidance, as well as referrals and discounts to legal professionals in your area. While talking with your Wellbeing Hotline consultant, ask them about financial services to help you create a budget to effectively meet the needs of your loved one.

Flexible Work Arrangements

Trying to care for a family member creates a new set of demands. The George Washington University is committed to assisting employees in developing a work-life balance by supporting the use of flexible work arrangements, when it is reasonable and practical to do so, and where operational needs will not be adversely affected. Flexible work arrangements can include telecommuting, flex time, adjusted meal periods, and compressed work weeks.

GW Hospital

The George Washington University Hospital offers a number of free or discounted services for adults age 65 and older. Through the Senior Advantage program, seniors receive free physician referrals, notice of upcoming special senior events and health fairs, VIP hospital accommodations, discounted prices on prescription drugs and much more.

The hospital also offers a variety of free seminars, support groups, and other community events. Learn more about the many programs available through the GW Hospital.

The GW Employee Assistance Program can help provide a list of area childcare centers based on your search parameters.

  • Child Care Centers

  • Family Child Care Homes

  • In-Home Care

  • Babysitting Agencies and options

  • Nanny Agencies and options

  • Au Pair Agencies and options

  • Preschools/Nursery Schools

  • Before and After School Programs

  • Summer Programs

  • Emergency/Temporary Care

  • Special Needs Programs

Call 866-522-8509 (or 888-879-8274 for TTY service) any time of the day or night to discuss your needs with a specialist.

If you are an expecting parent, please take a look at new parent and expectant parent resources.