Saatchis unveils Aids ad drive

The National Aids Trust is launching its first national public awareness campaign, through Saatchi & Saatchi, in a bid to challenge the stigma associated with HIV.

The multimedia campaign entitled "Are you HIV prejudiced?" will target people with preconceived ideas about HIV and those living with the virus, and aims to challenge prevailing discrimination and prejudices.

It will run for two weeks and feature radio, print and online spots alongside heavyweight television activity. The TV work will run on MTV and the Community Channel.

The TV spot captures the feelings of someone living with HIV as they are hugged in a pub by a stranger during a football game.

In a bid to confront the issues of stigma, two press ads ask for eye contact and show an HIV case study, illustrating different forms of discrimination.

Additionally, a radio spot imitates two candidates being interviewed for a job as a childminder. One seems far less interested and qualified than the other, but before being invited to make the choice between the two, the suitable candidate reveals she is HIV positive.

Derek Bodell, the chief executive of NAT, said: "Stigma and discrimination present particular problems to those living with HIV. These can take many forms. In the UK, HIV and Aids-related discrimination in employment, health care, insurance and education have all been widely reported since the beginning of the epidemic. Increasing public awareness and understanding is essential."

The creative team for the radio spots was Julian Dyer and Keith Terry. The press work was written by Michael Campbell and Joel Bradley, and art directed by Colin Jones and Phil Clarke. TV work was written by Andrew Fisher and art directed by Dave Askwith.

Media planning and buying for the campaign is through ZenithOptimedia.

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