Ad Council Alzheimer’s and Father’s Day campaigns remind us of the things we never want to forget

Dance Like a Dad for the Ad Council

With the advent of June comes two campaigns from the Ad Council that aim to start conversations: one centered on Alzheimer’s and other brain disorders; the other on fatherhood involvement — in time for Father's Day.

Through a collaboration with the Alzheimer’s Association comes ‘Our Stories’: the debut pro bono campaign developed by The Community that launched on 3 June, which features firsthand accounts of real Alzheimer’s patients. The personalization of the disease is meant to spur a dialogue between families who detect early onset signs of it in their loved ones.

“When we took on this campaign, we were all inspired by the need for public education around the benefits of an early diagnosis for Alzheimer’s,” said Heidi Arthur, chief campaign development officer of the Ad Council. “Every 65 seconds someone in the US develops the disease and it’s the sixth leading cause of death. While there is no cure for Alzheimer’s, the positive impact of an early diagnosis on the person with the disease and their loved ones can be life-changing.”

However, while a survey conducted by the Alzheimer’s Association showed that nine out of 10 Americans would want to be confronted about exhibiting symptoms of cognitive decline, three out of four confessed the difficulty in talking to family members about the topic. With this data, the organization seeks to diminish stigmas related to Alzheimer’s and make the process more comfortable for everyone by not only implementing tools and resources on its website, but also by showing people that they are not alone.

The campaign, which features the stories of five diagnosed people and their care partners, also has hand-drawn illustrations from Bastien DuBois and original compositions by Gustavo Santaolalla. The weaving together of multimedia is meant to make the experience as immersive and interactive as possible, so that the discussions around steps to potential treatment can happen as quickly as possible.

“By featuring real stories in such an identifiable and beautiful way, the work that The Community developed will allow people to connect emotionally, lessen the barrier of fear and make the issue more approachable,” Arthur said.

‘#DanceLikeaDad’

Channeling an equally immersive experience is the 11 June launch of ‘#DanceLikeaDad’ as a part of the Ad Council and Campbell Ewald 'Fatherhood Involvement' campaign, just in time for Father’s Day on 16 June.

The ads are short clips, each less than a minute long, of dads dancing and goofing off with their kids. Their goal is to show that sometimes it’s the little things that matter most, and there are more ways than one to be involved as a parent.

“This is a year-round effort for the Ad Council,” Arthur said. “We believe that highlighting the simple moments fathers share with their kids can make a big difference.”

According to the National Fatherhood Initiative, more than one in four children live without a father in the home, leading to the “father factor” in many of the nation’s societal ills, such as poverty, behavioral problems, crime, incarceration and substance abuse. Because of this, the campaign encourages fathers all over to step up and “make a moment” in their children’s lives.

“Above all else, it aims to inspire fathers to be engaged with their kids by dancing their ways into their hearts and by sharing a small moment that will make a big impact,” Arthur said.

‘#DanceLikeaDad’ is designed to foster bonds and is a surefire way to “simultaneously embarrass and encourage love.”

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