New ad campaign portrays caregivers' call for help

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(AP) – There’s a campaign beginning Thursday to raise awareness of the heavy impact of family caregiving as the nation rapidly grays – and to point overwhelmed families toward resources that may ease the strain.

In a new public service ad, a woman grips her car’s steering wheel as her frail father, on oxygen, coughs beside her and her kids play in the back seat. The frustration is recognizable to millions who struggle to care for aging loved ones while holding down jobs and raising children.

AARP vice president Debra Whitman says most don’t know where to turn for help. An AARP report found families provide a staggering $450 billion worth of unpaid care annually – and other research shows the toll that can take on the caregivers’ own health and finances.

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