Digital Campaign of the Week: Action for Children

Cardboard cutouts on city streets lead people to the charity's website as part of its campaign to highlight child neglect

Action for Children Find Emily campaign
Action for Children Find Emily campaign

What is it?

An integrated campaign called Emily's Story. It includes a 30-second film for television and online that tells the story of a girl neglected by her parents.

The charity has also created an outdoor campaign that encourages members of the public to search for and rescue 1,000 miniature cardboard cutouts of Emily that have been placed in 26 different locations across the UK. When found, they direct the rescuer to the campaign’s microsite, where they are invited to make a donation and sign a petition calling on the Government to do more to tackle the problem. According to the charity, 1.5 million children in the UK are neglected.

Why an outdoor campaign?

To raise awareness among those who do not understand that child neglect is a problem in the UK.

"Watching the advert and searching for the Emily dolls is an interactive process; people who had no idea about the prevalence of neglect are confronted by the issue first-hand,"  says Tom McLaren-Webb, head of campaigns at Action for Children.

Was an agency involved?

Baby Creative made the film. The outdoor campaign was created in-house.

How is it being promoted?

On Facebook and Twitter.

Have the public responded?

Action for Children did not give exact figures, but described the response so far as "excellent". 

How much did it cost?

Again, Action for Children isn't saying, but it did describe the campaign as "cost-effective". The cardboard cutouts were cheap to produce and a large chunk of the work was crafted online at low cost.
Third Sector's verdict

Interactive and imaginative. The combination of the film and real-life hunt for cutouts forces people to confront the problem.

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