DJ Casey Rochell Mixes Shocking Words into a Human Rights Rallying Cry
Mencap, the UK’s leading learning disability charity, today launches its biggest campaign to date, created by London advertising agency The Corner. Debuting as a human rights rallying cry, “Here I Am” aims to educate and promote the closer integration of people with a learning disability within modern social culture.
The charity, which fights for equal rights and opportunities for people with a learning disability, while challenging preconceptions, has worked with The Corner to create a new communications strategy: one that demands better understanding of people with a learning disability, who have individual personalities and emotions just like everybody else.
The creative celebrates this in a TV and cinema commercial shot by acclaimed Director Ed Morris of Rattling Stick.
The TVC takes a quote from Atlantic Magazine in 1968, where a leading academic suggests that someone with Down’s Syndrome is not in fact a person, and that there should be no guilt “putting them away” in a sanitarium or even lethal sense.
This quote is then cut up by DJ Casey Rochell, a young man with Down’s Syndrome, who turns these shocking words into something positive and upbeat.
“A Down’s is not person” becomes “A Down’s is a person”.
Gerard Cousins, Director of Marketing and Engagement at Mencap says: “Our biggest battle is helping people feel included across all areas of society – of the 1.4 million people in the UK with a learning disability, 65% can work, but just 6% are actually in work. The strategy behind ‘Here I Am’ is not to get money or simply tug on the heartstrings. Instead, we are trying to start a movement, with the aim of convincing society to truly accept people with a learning disability.”
Tom Ewart, Founding Partner and ECD at The Corner said: "Like the race, gender and sexuality movements that preceded it, learning disability is the next great social rights challenge we face as a modern society. For too long people with learning disabilities have been shunned because we don't understand them. Our ‘Here I Am’ campaign starts to bring these people into our lives in surprising and powerful ways, not asking for help, but showing what who they are and what they can do, and asking only that we understand them. At a time when new advanced Down’s syndrome screening is a hot topic of debate, and the question of what is ‘normal’ is pushing at moral boundaries, it’s important to remind ourselves that diversity is a bedrock of civilisation and should be celebrated, not erased."
Creative Agency: The Corner
Copywriter: Jack Denyer
Art Director: Niall Kerry
Strategist: Charlie Kirkbride
Producer: Katrina Morelli, Theo Philips, Alicia Stol
Executive Creative Director: Tom Ewart
Chief Strategy Officer: Neil Hourston
Business Director : Massimo Fiori
Account Director: Greg Hall
Production Company: Rattling Stick
Director: Ed Morris
Producer: Ellie Fry
Edit Company: Speade
Editor: Ben Crook
Post Production / VFX
Post Production Company: The Mill
Audio Post Production: 750
Category: Charity , Corporate and social
Genre: Dialogue , People