Cannes Lions

The Missing Chapter - Direct

LEO BURNETT, Mumbai / PROCTER & GAMBLE / 2022

Awards:

1 Shortlisted Cannes Lions
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Overview

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Credits

Overview

Background

Girls lag behind boys in education in India. The adult literacy rate in rural areas for females is 50.6% whereas for males is 74.1%. Girls are at a higher risk of dropping out of school by the time they hit puberty.

Every year a whopping 23 million girls, drop out of school, because of one missing piece of information on menstruation. Menstruation is a topic so taboo that not even mothers talk about it to their daughters.

The only place they could have learnt about menstruation is at school. But sadly because of the same taboo even the national council of education never printed the chapter menstruation.

To make matters worse, this problem is bigger in media dark, rural areas with poor school attendance. India is a vast country with different languages and culture that changes every 20 kms. We had to find a solution that could tackle all these

Idea

MISSING CHAPTER - For the first time in India, we designed a chapter that explains simple biology behind periods to educate girls of India. The chapter also explained ways for girls to manage their period by using pads.

MISSING CHAPTER LOGO: We designed a strong symbol to stand for period education. An amalgamation of both period and education in one unit. For the first time in the country, we told the story of the missing chapter on periods through a bleeding vulva, embedded in a book.

MISSING CHAPTER WALL ART: To reach the girls in media dark areas we used India’s oldest broadcasting medium wall art to spread period education.

PETITION: We launched a petition to add this chapter in schoolbooks and officially make it a part of curriculum.

Strategy

Primary Target Audience: Young girls (aged 12+ years) in metros and rural areas in India, on the verge of entering puberty and at risk to exit school due lack of awareness of periods and how to manage them.

Secondary Audience: Indian citizens concerned about female education; Key stakeholders like government organisations and ministers with the power to change age old education system; School teachers responsible for imparting knowledge in schools. Influencers who wanted to join our cause.

Strategy: We aimed to fight for education through education. To reduce female illiteracy by fighting off period illiteracy. If schoolbooks were missing the chapter on periods, we had to not only write it and spread it, but also make it a compulsory part of biology books. Our strategy was to increase mental and physical availability of the missing chapter (source: Byron Sharp). Make it easy accessible through various mediums and easy to understand.

Execution

MISSING CHAPTER: We designed a chapter that explains simple biology behind periods and sparked a revolution.

FILM:

We started with a film telling the story of 3 rebellious girls reading the chapter out loud in school, to trigger the conversation nationally.

TV, DIGITAL, RETAIL:

The red piece of paper (the missing chapter) and the bleeding vulva logo became the symbol of our revolution. News channels read the chapter live on prime time TV. We urged Indian citizens to read out the chapter on social media. We used our packs and retail space to take the conversation forward.

OUTDOOR & PETITION;

In collaboration with local artists from 28 states, we adapted the chapter in native art and languages and put it up on 1000 school walls in media dark areas to reach girls in every corner of India. We also launched a petition to make the chapter compulsory part of schoolbooks.

Outcome

The missing chapter didn’t just get accepted in villages across India, it also was instrumental in changing a century old education system. In a historic decision, the government committed to change a education system by adding the missing chapter on periods in schoolbooks.

Missing Chapter campaign overall generated

1Million + Petitions

2.5 Million Packs Bought

9.5 Million Girls Educated

13 Million Reach On Social Media (>2X vs yearly average)

>35Million e-com impressions

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