Kids Often Get Into Danger, But Vaccines Keep Danger Out of Kids, Says New UNICEF Campaign

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To urge more parents to vaccinate their children, UNICEF is launching a new, global #VaccinesWork campaign across digital, social, outdoor and print.

Created by Santa Monica-based RPA, the campaign features a 60-second animated film, animated social media posts, and static and animated posters. All begin today, the start of World Immunization Week, which runs annually from April 24 to 30.

The animated film, “Dangers,” is based on the relatable insight that kids, by their very nature, are little daredevils who constantly put themselves at risk of injury. While we can’t prevent all dangers kids get themselves into, vaccination can help prevent dangers from getting into our kids.

The film was illustrated and animated by LOBO director Mateus de Paula Santos of São Paulo, Brazil, using a combination of 2-D and 3-D animation. According to Jason Sperling, chief of creative development for RPA, this format is a perfect fit both for speaking to parents and parents-to-be, and for adding a lightheartedness to a collection of dangerous situations.

The campaign’s static and animated posters feature six additional interpretations of kids facing danger; they are depicted in aspirational roles and have obvious antagonists. For example, one poster features a kid as an astronaut with an oversized arm administering the vaccine.

Sperling said animating the still posters “bring the illustrations to life, making them more magical in social media channels.” He also said the arm featured in each acts as a “barrier for protection that grows around the child as the metaphorical danger closes in.” And he said the campaign is meant to promote vaccinations against all diseases.

The kids in the posters represent a range of ethnicities, reflecting the global nature of the campaign. Each poster was created by a different illustrator, including Laurene Boglio, Alex Fine, Geo Law, Jean-Pierre Le Roux, Melanie Matthews and Eric Nyquist.

The film is being translated into 20 languages, including French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Russian, Ukrainian, Hindi, Urdu, Tagalog and Romanian, for global distribution. Paid posts in English, Spanish, French and Arabic on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter also will reach parents worldwide.

The campaign’s animated and static posters are being distributed to UNICEF country offices and national committees worldwide; the organization has a presence in over 190 countries and territories.

To encourage greater reach for the campaign, UNICEF is partnering with the World Health Organization, sponsor of World Immunization Week; Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance; and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which will contribute one dollar to UNICEF this month for every like or share of social media posts that use the hashtag #VaccinesWork, up to $1 million. UNICEF has employed this hashtag since 2017.

RPA, added Sperling, “is an agency that tries to put people first. We feel that nothing is more satisfying than work that makes a difference, has a beating heart.”

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