Reigniting belief in the power of helping.
International aid organisations in the UK are teaming up to launch a major campaign showcasing the positive impact international aid has within countries most in need. The campaign is the first time the international development sector is speaking to the public as one.
Forming the ‘Aid Alliance’ are organisations including Care, Save the Children and ActionAid, that worked with insight, strategy and ideas studio The Good Side to help to reignite belief in the power of ‘helping’ and the progress happening everyday thanks to international aid.
The vital role of international aid.
Britain has always played a vital role in international aid, and research by The Good Side revealed the nation’s habits when it comes to donating, with 75% preferring to donate privately and only 14% wanting to be recognised for their donation. 41% of Brits have donated to charity within the last year, showing that the spirit of generosity and the determination to help others will endure, even when times are tough.
However, with the government’s international aid allocation decreasing and international institutions facing ongoing challenges over trust and transparency, the Aid Alliance has been created to tackle growing misperceptions about aid effectiveness and to rebuild trust in the sector.
From research, we learnt that support for the aid sector is in decline—both in funding and wider engagement. There’s widespread cynicism among the public about aid and its power to help. Even the word itself has become politically charged.
So we wanted to reframe the way we spoke about it; highlighting what aid is at its core—people helping other people.
We wanted to tell a story of optimism by shining a light on all of those people doing incredible work in their own communities. We also wanted it to be a story of unity, reflecting on the power of all of these individuals, from multiple charities or organisations, working separately, but together, to help. From there, ‘We The Helpers’ was born.
Chris Hewitt (of B&Q ‘Build a Life’ fame) and the Knucklehead team were fantastic creative partners. Chris’ belief in the cause and long-standing expertise in sensitively handling found-footage proved essential, given that we weren’t shooting or casting for the campaign. Rather, it was a case of combing through everything at our disposal and teasing out what worked.
Production was a rolling process, with each day yielding new footage across various media. We exploited those opportunities and leant into CCTV, iPhone video, body-cam footage—the camera shakes and imperfections help communicate the real human stories being shown.
We also relied on charity partners (UNICEF, Save the Children and WaterAid to name just a few) who provided fantastic footage of The Helpers on the ground. But right up until we received this footage, everything we were discussing was entirely hypothetical. So seeing how the story unfolded in-front of us as we explored different footage combinations was a nerve-wracking but exciting process.
‘We the Helpers’ in a Nutshell
‘We the Helpers’ tells the story of those who are working tirelessly, often without recognition, to save and change lives around the world.
We’re telling the human story of aid to galvanise belief in the cause and champion the essential progress being made.
The Helpers are a source of hope for us all.
Simon Capper, head of performance and insight at WaterAid said: “Support for the Aid sector is in decline – both in funding and broader engagement. Many members of the public want to make a contribution towards positive change in the world, but they are starting to doubt that this is achievable through support of international institutions, and they are losing the belief that they, personally, can make a difference.
“We want this campaign to reignite the belief that it is possible for all of us to make a difference. We are making progress every day, thanks to the helpers; from donors to aid workers, vocal supporters to taxpayers.”
The Good Side collaborated with a team of expert agency partners to deliver each part of the We The Helpers campaign, which puts a spotlight on the importance of aid. The campaign will launch with a 60s film, developed by The&Partnership, which highlights human stories of aid workers as a reminder of the power of helping and the impact international aid is making.
Media strategy, planning and buying was handled by The Kite Factory and PR specialists Four Communications are supporting the nationwide launch.
Creative agency HarrimanSteel developed the We The Helpers brand identity, including all elements of the website design and functionality. The website steps beyond simple headlines, to give in depth information and share facts about how aid is helping.
Toby Allen, ECD at The&Partnership: “We were delighted to help on this brief. In reframing aid and championing the people behind it, we hope to change the conversation around aid. The Helpers are a source of hope for us all.”
The campaign will run nationwide across digital media and PR and will be supported by all partner aid channels.
Lead agency: The Good Side
Creative agency: The &Partnership
Production agency: Knucklehead
Post-production agency: Electric Theatre Collective
Director: Chris Hewitt
Media: The Kite Factory
PR: Four Communications
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