Cannes Lions


SAATCHI & SAATCHI, Belgrade / FOND B92 / 2012

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Presentation Image






Serbian hospitals were poorly equipped to provide care for our youngest and most vulnerable citizens. The 40-year-old incubators were severely outdated, resulting in a death rate for babies that exceeded 60%. Despite these startling figures, incubators were not being upgraded by the government and the public remained unaware of the problem.Our goal was to receive donations for 100 new incubators. We had to bring the issue to the forefront of people’s minds and help ensure that more babies would not die as a result of dated technology. The challenge was to motivate Serbians into collective action and put pressure on companies with the capacity to help. But, rather than asking individuals to donate to the cause, we mobilized people behind a humanitarian movement, 'Battle for the Babies'. To create an emotional interest in the cause, babies were framed as the nation’s youngest and most heroic fighters embroiled in a battle where living is the final victory.


Our weapon was the voice of people. We made people part of the battle, not just a means to an end. We created a website where they could chose roles for themselves within the ‘army’.

Recruiters created pressure by voting for companies they felt should donate to the cause; veterans (people who were premature themselves) shared their stories; medics (members of the medical community) highlighted needs of premature babies; and guerrilla squads spread the word.

Every day more and more people, organisations, hospitals, clubs, schools, faculties, and institutions joined this heroic movement. Volunteers from all Serbia distributed materials, organised events to promote the cause and created voting spots on the streets. The army created a phenomenal buzz which motivated more people to join the battle!Independent media networks and all national media joined the battle by donating free media. The image of a baby’s raised fist, drawing on the well-known image of resistance, became an iconic symbol for the campaign, sweeping across the country.


Public awareness, engagement of media and number of donated incubators were the main criteria for evaluation.1m people joined this heroic battle and put pressure on more than 700 companies. The campaign raised funds for 195 incubators, totalling €2,600,000, covering needs of the entire country.

Every newspaper, TV and radio station in Serbia engaged in the battle. Media reach was over 85% of the total population. The campaign generated €420,000 worth of free media and €1,700,000 in PR. The total media budget was €0.

All contributing companies and individuals were rewarded with a medal of honour, signifying the invaluable contribution they made to the lives of others. The event was broadcast live on national television. The President of Serbia declared 2012 the Year of Babies.

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