In October 2012, there was a massive car bomb explosion in a crowded residential area in Achrafieh (Beirut, Lebanon). It not only took lives, but damaged 4 big buildings and left their residents homeless.
Without any governmental support for these victims, Offre Joie, a non-partisan NGO, stepped in to help them.
Armed with a small amount of their own volunteers, they approached us to help them increase awareness and encourage more people to join.
The insight was inspired by the volunteers: they just want to help, without seeking any recognition. Making the campaign idea Volunteers Do Not Seek Recognition.
The campaign kicked off with a TVC that shows the diversity of people helping on site, with their backs turned to keep the volunteers anonymous.
We launched a Facebook Activation that asked people to change their profile pictures to pictures of people with their backs turned, labeled as “citizens” – to show their solidarity with the volunteers and the anonymity they are promoting.
The campaign attracted one of Lebanon’s popular socio-political talk shows that dedicated a 2 hour special to the NGO. To everyone’s surprise, the Lebanese President honored Offre Joie with one of the nation’s highest distinctions: National Order of the Cedar.
We got Offre Joie’s volunteers to increase from 1,400 to 2,000.
They rebuilt 80 homes, uniting families.
The campaign earned more than $1Million in earned media, and engaged with 45% of the population.
Predominantly, we managed to change the conversation from political turmoil, into an act of national solidarity.
Our initial goal was to promote the existing work of Offre Joie and recruit more volunteers to achieve the organization’s goals of rebuilding a devastated neighborhood.
Our less immediate and much more challenging goal was to promote Offre Joie’s mission of “Bringing back the Lebanese Family Together”. At a time where the social divide of the country was gaining intensity, achieving public unity and social cooperation was going to be an exceedingly difficult task.
So our mission was to engage the entire nation, beyond the immediate needs of Offre Joie, to encourage and promote volunteerism and social cooperation at large.
We managed to achieve our client’s initial objectives as, after our campaign, Offre Joie was able to recruit 600 additional volunteers – which increased the number of volunteers from 1,400 to 2,000. With these extra hands, Offre Joie managed to rebuild 80 homes, allowing families to be at home in a short period of time.
Where the campaign also succeeded is in the media attention it got. The relevance of our campaign as well as the shock created by people turning their back on Facebook and during a talk show attracted the media’s attention which triggered the debate and enabled the conversation to shift from an aggressive and broken dispute to an open dialogue on national solidarity. In total, the campaign generated over $1Million in earned media, reaching 45% of the population.
We brought our idea to life by developing work around the concept of anonymous volunteerism. It started with a TVC that showed the diversity of people helping on site yet keeping their backs turned in order to stay anonymous. We launched a Facebook activation asking people to change their profile pictures to pictures of people with their backs turned, labeled as “citizens” As the campaign got more attention, we worked on a stunt on one of Lebanon’s popular talk shows. We asked the audience to turn their backs to the cameras, wearing t-shirts that labeled them as citizens – keeping with the volunteers’ anonymity and the idea of unity. We managed to attract the attention of, the Lebanese President , who honored Offre Joie with one of the nation’s highest distinctions during the live show.
In October 2012, there was a massive car bomb explosion in a crowded residential area in Achrafieh (in Beirut city in Lebanon). This explosion not only took lives, but damaged 4 big buildings and left their residents homeless. Without any governmental support for these victims, Offre Joie, a non-partisan NGO, stepped in to help them.
The insight from the campaign was inspired by the Offre Joie volunteers: they are regular people that just want to help, without seeking any recognition. Making the campaign idea encouraging people to join them rather than thank them.
Our insight was based on both an observation as well as a value shared by the entire society:
- We went to visit the actual volunteers of Offre Joie and noticed that all of them were working very discretely: none of them were bragging about their good deeds nor seeking any acknowledgment for their efforts.
- As we also needed to find a message of unity, we wanted to find an insight that is common to every Lebanese in the country. We tried to understand how each Lebanese perceived the idea of charity and voluntarism and realized that the two main religious cultures in the country (Islam and Chirstianity) encouraged discretion in the act of charity. So the idea of not seeking credit for the good work you’re doing was a value shared and accepted by the entire Lebanese society.
From there came our campaign idea.