The faces of this COVID-19 marketing campaign tell a story of caring.
The ‘Stay Home’ campaign posters from Sto:lo Service Agency (SSA) feature youth and elders from various Sto:lo communities offering their reasons for staying home during the pandemic.
The idea came about in Chilliwack when the Mémiyelhtel youth team was looking for a way to make a meaningful contribution, says Breanna Miller, Youth Services Manager, SSA.
“We believed that the best way to motivate young people was to engage them and keep them accountable to one another,” Miller explains. “Furthermore, we wanted some of our knowledge keepers and Elders, whom are the most vulnerable population at this time, to encourage young people to stay home and protect our elders.”
Our Elders are important to us. Please stay home and avoid gatherings, even with relatives, to protect the people who are important to you. pic.twitter.com/c5qBl92rIX— Stolo Service Agency (@Stolo_Services) April 29, 2020
The goal of the Stay Home campaign is to actively encourage people to follow the health recommendations to practise physical distancing – especially among young people.
“We work with Indigenous youth in our community, and we recognized that although most of them understood what was happening with the pandemic and the requests for distancing, not all of them were actively limiting close contact with others.
“There are many cultural considerations that make distancing recommendations even more challenging and we wanted Indigenous youth to know they are not alone in complying with these limitations.”
They have 16 catchy campaign posters. Of those, 11 feature the faces of young people. Seven other contributions are from youth who are currently supported in the Mémiyelhtel program.
“Initially, the goal was to encourage the youth we serve under our programs to comply with distancing. Since the campaign started, the posters have been shared widely across many Indigenous communities.
Each elder, alumni, and youth stated their own particular reason for practising distancing and staying home,” Miller says.
“Although the messaging is simple, there is a spectrum of reasons for them to each do their part, and these are reasons other young people can relate to.
The text on one of the posters reads: “Our Elders are important to us. Please stay home and avoid gatherings, even with relatives, to protect the people who are important to you.”
“Each week we have more youth and alumni who want to contribute to the campaign. They see the impact the others are making by using their voice, and they proudly want to be a part of making a difference at this time. As stated, these young people are connected within their respective communities, families and peer groups, and therefore have increasingly promoted staying home.
To complement the campaign, they made home-kits for youth participants in the program, which included supplies and activities they can do at home. They are hosting weekly challenges and contests to engage youth to use these materials.
“We are so proud of the young people who have helped send a message,” Miller points out.
”When young people stay home it is a sign of respect and selflessness and we want to acknowledge them for doing what they can to keep their family and community safe.
“As well, they are setting good examples for the children in our community.
“Collectively if our communities can continue distancing, as Chelsey and Ceda state, ‘together we shall succeed’ to ‘help flatten the curve of COVID-19.’”
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