AARP has launched a three-year public awareness campaign on the issues surrounding the growing number of family caregivers in the U.S. Anchored by an Ad Council media campaign, the goal is to both raise awareness and to provide caregivers who may be struggling with care issues a way to find services and support.
With over 42 million Americans now providing assistance to a relative, partner or friend who needs assistance, the issue looms large for baby boomers who are now the typical caregiver. Caught between competing demands for providing assistance to parents, caring for children, paying for college and saving for retirement, baby boomers find themselves in the middle of making many difficult decisions about their own futures and the immediate needs of family.
Family Caregiver Alliance applauds the efforts of AARP to bring more public awareness and attention to this largely hidden issue. Advances in medical care and treatment mean the wonderful gift of longevity. But for many, it may also require the assistance of others to remain in the community. We hope that by bringing the caregiving issue into full public view that we will be able to:
- Have more individuals recognize that, yes, they are caregivers now and will reach out for support
- Increase resources for caregiving families, friends and partners across the states
- Identify and assess the needs of informal caregivers across health and social service systems
Increasing public awareness of these issues is an important first step for identifying informal caregivers as valued members of a team of support for those who need assistance. FCA hopes this positive move will lead to real action in communities, states and on the federal level. Let’s make family caregiving something that we all talk about!