Toy Soldiers

July 2009

The Challenge: The African continent has the world’s highest number of child soldiers, fighting in wars they don’t believe in, for causes they don’t understand. UNICEF extract many of these children from combat and reintegrate them into society. Our aim was to rally support for this programme.

The Solution: Sending out a direct mailer that garners support for UNICEF’s child soldier programme. Initially, the mailer appears to be a typical packet of toy soldiers, but once opened, the recipient finds that the figurines are in fact children - reading books, playing soccer, riding bikes and doing other childhood activities.

Results: The package went to UNICEF supporter mailing lists as well as potential corporate sponsors. Awareness is up, and beyond the desired reaction from the recipients, many compliments are being received about the unique way in which it was put forward. More than a simple message, it’s an ongoing reminder of the realities these children face every day.

Direct advertisment created by Y&R, South Africa for Unicef, within the category: Public Interest, NGO.

Turn soldiers back into children

Advertising Agency: Y&R South Africa
Creative Directors: Liam Wielopolski, Michael Blore
Art Director: Mbuso Ndlovu
Copywriter: Sebastian Schneider
Designers: Anita Modi, Bradley Stapleton

Comments (20)

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Highest Rated

lynnholilin's picture
Activity Score 118

here here! :-)

Lynn Ho
Decision Communications Pte Ltd
Advertising Agency Singapore

CrackerJackFlash's picture
Activity Score 19502


rehpani's picture
Activity Score 312

strong message!!!

Gualcor's picture
Activity Score 978


Stay low, move fast. Kill first, die last. 1 shot 1 kill, not luck, just skill.

cruzialx's picture
Activity Score 194

Good Job

In addition if child soldiers have those toys, they would think why they are holding guns instead of a toy.

FeliUmc's picture
Activity Score 44

i want!

Jaap Grolleman's picture
Jaap Grolleman
Activity Score 6992

That's so cool. Nice idea!

silvi's picture
Activity Score 4172

Wow! Sometimes I wish an idea like these.

rehpani's picture
Activity Score 312


lynnholilin's picture
Activity Score 118

here here! :-)

Lynn Ho
Decision Communications Pte Ltd
Advertising Agency Singapore

chris myles's picture
chris myles
Activity Score 429

strong message: don't think it will change the situation.

Noor Salah's picture
Noor Salah
Activity Score 34

very good

A stranger abroad returns's picture
A stranger abro...
Activity Score 18

This is good.

rolling.stone's picture
Activity Score 2741



~ Quite obviously, I have gathered no moss ! ~

headoffice Communication's picture
headoffice Comm...
Activity Score 196

strong message.

germanhudders's picture
Activity Score 336

Solid strong message...

sintra's picture
Activity Score 699

Kudos , great piece

mariolakownacka's picture
Activity Score 30

sad but true... alas people dont get it

Guest's picture

Who did they mail it to?

Guest's picture

Ah, never mind. I see...

pau klein's picture
pau klein
Activity Score 3

Great Direct Response Marketing Communication (DMC)

Pau Klein