Through a partnership with ad agency TAXI, AARP is continuing efforts to help the 42 million Americans who currently serve as caregivers. The initiative is in direct response to findings of a recent poll that surveyed caregivers across the country and identified specific challenges they face.
The national poll and report, Caregivers: Life Changes and Coping Strategies, revealed high levels of depression and isolation among caregivers, with one in three reporting feeling sad or depressed and 44% reporting they had bottled up their feelings. Other challenges included sleeping less, eating more and avoiding decisions and people.
“Family, friends and neighbors who support a loved one rarely see themselves as a caregiver,” said Debra Whitman, AARP Executive Vice President for Policy, Strategy and International Affairs. “And they almost never ask for help. But at some point in their lives most people will be a caregiver or need support. Our campaign is here to remind caregivers that they aren’t alone and there is help.”
The campaign includes a series of public service announcements that raise awareness about the challenges associated with the rising number of people who provide caregiving services. TAXI is working on a pro bono basis with AARP on the campaign.
“We have caregivers here on our staff, so this was a really personal issue for us.” said David Jenkins, President of TAXI NYC. “Our research showed that caregivers face a great deal of stress in having to play these multiple roles for their loved ones, and that was a really powerful new idea to be talking about. We knew that there was creative opportunity to showcase this story, demonstrating to caregivers that we understand their struggle and can offer resources to help.”
Written by Elizabeth Ecker