Objective: To characterize informal caregivers of dependent older people after a stroke related to aspects of care, and to describe the activities performed and the difficulties faced by these caregivers. Methods: Cross-sectional, descriptive study, held in southern Brazil with 190 informal caregivers of older adults after stroke. The sociodemographic data instrument and the Capacity Scale for Informal Caregivers of Elderly Stroke Patients (ECCIID-AVC), adapted and validated for use in Brazil by Dal Pizzol et al., were used. Results: Most caregivers were women (82.6%) or children (56.3%), had average schooling of 9.6 years, and the majority (68.3%) provided care for people with moderate to severe disability. The main activities carried out included: providing materials and/or support for eating (99%), dressing (98.4%), and administering medications (96.2%). Caregivers had the most difficulty with transferring and positioning activities. Conclusion: Most caregivers have adequate capacity to provide essential care to the dependent older adult after a stroke. However, a significant portion had difficulty in the activities of transferring and positioning the older person due to the lack of guidance regarding the posture to carry out these activities. The assessment of nurses regarding the activities performed and the difficulties faced by caregivers is an important strategy to identify problems and effectively attend to the needs of these individuals at all levels of health care.