As part of the Make Poverty History initiative, I was asked by Richard Curtis to work on a campaign to help control Neglected Tropical Diseases. These are the silent killers that create the disfigurement, blindness and poverty that together, kill more people in the world than AIDS and malaria combined. The biggest problem was that the symptoms are so ugly and horrific that people just look away.
We established seven of the diseases could be controlled with one drug costing as little as 50 cents, but the politics of governments and pharma companies meant they weren’t being distributed. So, we created a mission: END7 diseases in 7 years.
With a tiny budget, we created a campaign that created awareness among celebrities asking them to use their social networks to rally their followers to put pressure on politicians and rich organisations to help.
Our animated Mission in a Minute video was created by a college animator with a VO by Bill Nighy. Our Celebrity Shocker film had famous actors from Hollywood, Bollywood, Latin America, and Europe. Designers in fashion and film used the worm motifs as patterns, a typeface and to create images to raise awareness and money. Politicians agreed to get on board.
I spoke at an event at the White House buildings in Washington and at one lunch we raised $7million, such was the potency of the campaign. Eventually, the pharma companies donated the drugs and logistic companies offered to transport them for free.
The END7 campaign actually delivered within 5 years, the remaining funds went to Malaria No More. It has been recognised by the UN and The Gates Foundation as well as creative and effectiveness award shows.
Creatives: Sophie Clark, Fiona Clark, Alex Buchanan-Dunlop, Neil Williamson, Kristina Matovic, Kevan Ansell
END7 Neglected Tropical Diseases
A simple idea that’s saving lives