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AIDS: Reverse your perception

Posted by Tom Megginson | 15-06-2010 15:00 | Category: Health

What is it like living with AIDS? This heart-wrenching video for South Africa’s Topsy Foundation brings us through 90 hard days in the life of someone living with it. Be sure to watch it all the way to the end. It’s worth it:

[Thanks to AdFreak for the YouTube link]

Did you catch that? If you didn’t, watch it again. Spoiler after the jump.

That’s right — she’s getting better, not worse, thanks to access to medical care. (I really wish they hadn’t blown the surprise with the YouTube title, BTW!)

From Topsy’s site:

“We’re all familiar with the spectre of the person who gets AIDS and wastes away before our eyes. But what most people don’t realize is that the recovery of an AIDS sufferer on antiretrovirals (ARV’s) is every bit as dramatic. In just 90 days, a person can regain all the health they’ve lost. It’s called ‘the Lazarus effect.’ And Topsy’s newly launched television commercial is a pure demonstration of this.

Working together with Ogilvy Johannesburg and Egg Films, we located Selinah when she was in the very advanced stages of AIDS. We started her on treatment and filmed her every day for 90 days. The transformation is absolutely real. We used no special techniques and tricks in post production. Selinah fully supports our campaign - she wants everyone to know that she was brought back to life purely by ARV’s and her will to live.”


Wow. The “backwards time” idea has been used in social marketing quite a bit, from drunk driving commercials that remind you you can’t turn back the clock, to one of my own campaigns showing how emergency preparedness can help ensure you get through a crisis okay. But this one is special, because the surprise is a truly joyous one.


Topsy Foundation
Ogilvy Johannesburg
Adland (Via Adfreak)


Comments about AIDS: Reverse your perception

The Topsy Foundation Ad by Ogilvy and Egg Films has just won GOLD at the Cannes Lions Awards!!!

We need all the exposure we can get! Each month the Topsy Foundation provides more than 1500 people who are just like Selinah with free Antiretroviral meds.

Each amount donated, gets us that bit closer to our goal. ‘Many flames shed wonderful light’. Be a light in this world today and visit www.topsy.org.za and donate to an organisation that is bringing about tangible change in impoverished communities in South Africa!

Posted by Michelle Phipson | 28-06-2010 10:28

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