Boys and Girls has teamed up with creative industry talent in powerful new Amnesty International campaign focusing on tragedy that has unfolded in Syria this Christmas.
“This started out and has remained as a passion project for the agency. We have all been shocked and affected by the very complicated, but incredibly inhumane situation in Syria. We had been working with Amnesty for a few months when we suggested a Christmas campaign to try to raise awareness,” says Rory Hamilton, executive creative director of the agency.
“We have partnered with them to draw attention to the plight of the people of Syria and advocate for their human rights at a time when they face a very different Christmas to ours.”
According to Hamilton, the idea was to draw an immediate parallel between the White Christmas we in Ireland dream of and the unwanted White Christmas the people of Syria are suffering. One of the world’s best portrait photographers, James Day, has created his vision of the type of White Christmas that will be experienced by many Syrians. The characters in his compelling portraits are covered in the fine dust and ash of destruction that reflects the reality of the on-going situation.
With a tag line of “Not everyone dreams of a White Christmas” and a call to action from Amnesty International for the Irish public to join them to end human rights abuses in Syria (www.amnesty.ie/whitechristmas), the campaign will run through Christmas week, into the New Year and comprises executions for press, digital and print media. All media has been negotiated for free by Mindshare Ireland with support from the media owners concerned.
In addition, several well-known actors including Andrew Scott of “Sherlock” and “James Bond” fame and Amy Huberman have voiced a series of radio commercials giving voice to harrowing stories from Syrians – these will air during the festive season. Meantime, plans are afoot for a broadcast on Facebook live from Syria during Christmas.
A 70 second film, featuring real footage from Syria, featuring a cover of White Christmas by Isla Roe with editing and grading by Windmill Lane, graphically illustrates the devastation and reality of a White Christmas in Syria – this will be launched online to rally support.
According to Colm O’Gorman, executive director of Amnesty International Ireland : “Since the beginning of the conflict almost six years ago, Amnesty International has been documenting serious human rights abuses in Syria. War crimes are becoming routine, with even hospitals and UN aid convoys now treated as targets. Our evidence shows that all parties to the conflict have committed serious human rights violations. This Christmas, we’re calling on people in Ireland to join us. We must stand up for the protection of civilians, respect for international law and bring perpetrators to justice. We must not accept the wilful destruction of lives, communities and a country. With your support, we can expose these horrific human rights abuses and hold governments to account.”
Colm O’Gorman – Executive Director at Amnesty International in Ireland
Clare Herbert – Communications Manager at Amnesty International in Ireland
Boys and Girls
Business Director – Pat Stephenson
Executive Creative Director – Rory Hamilton
Creative Director – Laurence O’Byrne
Senior Copywriter – Kris Clarkin
Art Director – Katie Kidd
Design – Maxi McDonnell
Account Manager – Andrea Dalton Doran
Agency Producer – Derek Doyle
Senior Digital Strategist – Aoife Murphy
Head of Digital – Shane Casey
Agency Studio – Claire O’Reilly
Photography, Media, Production and Music
Media company – Mindshare
Media partner – Maximum Media
Photographer – James Day
Retoucher – Dennis Tuffiell
Post House – Windmill Lane
Editor – Vinnie Beirne
Grade – Dave Hughes
Music – Isla Roe