Did you know it was Child Abuse Prevention Month? I didn't until just recently. Fortunately, I've not yet been in the position to have to decide what to do if I suspected a child I knew was being abused. What would you do? Apparently many Canadians don't know what to do, or don't wish to get involved. The organizations mentioned further in this press release want to change that, to help protect children from abuse.
Toronto, Ontario (October 17, 2011) – In conjunction with Child Abuse Prevention Month, Boost for Kids Foundation is launching a cutting-edge television and online campaign in an effort to raise awareness about the prevalence of child abuse in Canada. Entitled “Make the Call Now”, the campaign depicts a chilling reality and encourages Canadians to be more vocal against signs of abuse.
Created by Marshall Fenn Communications, the television and online videos paint a powerful picture stating that one in every three children fall victim to some form of abuse. The online campaign is the first of its kind and takes the commercial one step further, providing the viewers with a leading, interactive role. Viewers are encouraged to call a 1-800 number. When dialled, the phone in the video rings, the call is answered by the abuser, and a dialogue is initiated that leads to the intervention and prevention of child abuse.
"The goal of this campaign is to leave viewers feeling uncomfortable, just as they would feel if they witnessed the abuse first-hand,” explains Karyn Kennedy, Executive Director, Boost for Kids Foundation. "This campaign should make Canadians feel as if they are standing between the child and the abuser and are the only means of stopping the violence. We want Canadians to take this personally. This is what motivates people to get up, make that call and stand in the way of continued abuse."
Child abuse includes child neglect as well as psychological, physical and sexual abuse. The Ontario Association of Children’s Aid Societies reports that a significant barrier to protecting children is the large number of individuals (54%) who would not report a suspicion of abuse.[i]
“Many Canadians don’t realize abuse manifests itself in many forms and it’s not always discernible through cuts and bruises,” explains Kennedy. “We need to educate people on the signs of abuse and encourage people to pick up the phone and make the welfare of children a top priority.”
The Public Service Announcement campaign appears in two different media types - television and online – and will run through to the end of November 2011. To view the campaign, go to www.MakeTheCallNow.ca.
“Canadians aren’t naive to the fact that child abuse happens, but the statistics show that they aren’t taking the steps to stop it,” explains James Dunlop, Creative Director at Marshall Fenn Communications. “Our goal was to develop a bold, hard-hitting campaign that amplifies the situation and provides viewers no other options but to make that call.”
Boost for Kids Foundation
Boost for Kids Foundation is a registered charity that is committed to eliminating abuse and violence in the lives of children, youth, and their families. Established in 2009, Boost for Kids Foundation works to generate sustainable funding for the programs and services offered by Boost Child Abuse Prevention & Intervention across Canada. The Foundation is governed by a Board of Directors with the mandate to raise funds that will allow Boost to respond effectively to the needs of children and youth who have experienced abuse. The organization believes that all children and youth have a right to grow up in a safe, healthy and nurturing environment free of child abuse.
Team of Agencies
The Boost for Kids campaign was conceived by Marshall Fenn Communications, the Canadian communications agency behind award-winning brand and advertising campaigns for companies such as Casino Rama.
Marshall Fenn worked collaboratively with Circle Productions (commercial production and editing), Silent Joe (music/sound production and editing), and COLR (visual effects and colour). All agencies generously donated their services to ensure this campaign delivered the powerful, commanding messages intended.
[i] Boost for Kids Foundation: http://boostforkids.org/LearnWithBoost/Statistics/tabid/155/Default.aspx. Accessed October 7, 2011.
**Disclosure: The press release above was written by Marshall Fenn Communications. We received no compensation for posting the release, and did so simply to inform our readers.