TBWAHuntLascaris in Johannesburg has created a striking piece of outdoor advertising, aimed to draw attention to human trafficking in South Africa, particularly in the run up to the 2010 World Cup.
The agency was also behind the impressive Trillion Dollar Campaign for The Zimbabwean newspaper, which featured genuine Zimbabwean money stuck to billboards in South Africa to draw attention to the economic disaster in the country under the Mugabe regime. This latest work is similiarly inventive – the campaign, which is created on behalf of the Southern African Counter-Trafficking Assistance Programme (SACTAP), is aimed at potential victims of trafficking.
“We realised that human trafficking relies on the fact that potential victims will be uninformed,” say the creatives, Miguel Nunes and Charles Pantland. “So we needed to talk to the community directly, the way human traffickers do. Like the recruiters, we targeted children near schools or just walking the streets of poverty stricken townships and dense urban slums where unemployment and forced prostitution are common. And like the criminals, we employed an element of deception: we created tunnels with false walls which precisely matched the walls behind them, so that when people walked through, they disappeared – leaving onlookers wondering what had happened to them. By forcing people to imagine the unimaginable, the potential victims actually became the message.”
The images here show the way the tunnels were set up, and the film above demonstrates one of them in action. Different tunnels were set up in various places across Johannesburg, and a poster at each tunnel’s exit explains the purpose of the campaign.
Art director: Miguel Nunes
Copywriter: Charles Pantland
Creative director: Vanessa Gibson
Executive creative director: Damon Stapleton
Photographer: Des Ellis
Director: Rob Wilson