case studies

The last possessions

Words by: Print Power
Cannes Lions 2021 Winner

AGENCY VMLY&R Dubai
BRAND Save The Children
CATEGORY Promotional Printed Media/Communication Design
AWARD Bronze Lion

With the number of Syria’s displaced children from their ten-year civil war reaching a shocking 8.4 million, Save The Children saw a disturbing tendency towards compassion fatigue among media outlets. They needed a hard-hitting campaign that would make people grasp what it’s like to have your whole way of life destroyed. 

So they brought home the stark reality of what it’s like to be a refugee, and displayed the belongings that the children in Jordan’s Zaatari Refugee Camp fled with - The Last Possessions - in a book. The 25 poignant images hauntingly demonstrate that the seemingly worthless becomes personal treasure in a crisis. Fahid’s fidget spinner, Amjad’s flute, Sewar’s teddy bear - all are displayed alongside tales of escape told in Arabic and English Haiku poetry form. 

The books were mailed to influential people globally, pages were released on social media and possessions were auctioned to raise funds. The campaign encouraged e-book downloads in 46 countries and generated a 26 percent rise in donations. More importantly, it brought attention to a crisis the world had forgotten. 

A powerful, heartbreaking, emotive look at the impact of war and displacement on young refugee children - and beautifully produced.
Sonoo Singh
Founder/ Creative Salon
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