On World Refugee Day, Save the Children Launches "It’s Not the Same This Year" Facebook Ad Campaign for Syrian Children

Ads Created through Facebook’s Hack for Good Competition in the Middle East

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FAIRFIELD, Conn. (June 20, 2017) — Save the Children on World Refugee Day is launching a Facebook ad campaign called "It’s Not the Same This Year" to remind people of the harsh realities that confront Syrian children after more than six years of war. The six spots show images of Syrian children as they are dramatically transformed from before to after the war, and vice-versa.

The 12-second ads will run for a week, leading up to Eid al-Fitr, a celebration marking the end of the month of Ramadan, when Muslims traditionally do acts of charity for less fortunate children and families.

"Save the Children is grateful to Facebook, the participants of Hack for Good, including the students and ad agencies, who came together to create this compelling ad campaign," said Carolyn Miles, president & CEO of Save the Children. "War has a devastating impact on children’s physical and emotional well-being, and these ads bring it to life. Syrian children have missed years of schooling, remain without a permanent and safe home and are suffering from toxic stress due to prolonged exposure to war. Six years into this conflict, we ask the global community not to forget these children."

Save the Children’s ad campaign was initially developed through Facebook’s Hack for Good competition in the Middle East. Facebook created the Hack for Good to celebrate the talent of young creatives and direct it towards a major social issue in the region. The Hack for Good competition took place during Dubai Lynx festival where UAE students from around the region were invited in March 2017 to develop a Ramadan-themed campaign that fits Save the Children’s advertising needs.

A panel of leading ad agency executives and creatives selected 16 finalists from a group of 100 participating students. The judging panel included representatives from OMD, Cheil, Leo Burnett, FP7 and JWT.

Students were divided into four teams comprising of four team members each, and they were also assigned a creative mentor from one of the partner advertising agencies. Each mentor worked closely with the teams to produce a campaign.

"We developed the Hack for Good to build community and connect people, which is part of Facebook's overall mission. We brought together advertising industry partners, a non-governmental organization, Facebook teams and students to collaborate and create this campaign. Our hope is that the "It's not the same this year" campaign will support Save the Children in their efforts to give kids health care and education during these difficult circumstances," said Nicola Mendelsohn, Vice President, Europe, Middle East, and Africa at Facebook.

In addition to the United States, the campaign spots are appearing in English and Arabic on Facebook across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa through the end of June.

Save the Children gives children in the United States and around the world a healthy start, the opportunity to learn and protection from harm. We invest in childhood — every day, in times of crisis and for our future. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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