Leo Burnett Beirut has won another award for “Khede Kasra”, a campaign developed for The Hariri Foundation, an organisation in Lebanon focused on empowering women. The integrated campaign, online at Facebook, centered around a simple “kasra” accent to inspire Lebanese women to bring about gender equality in society. The campaign won the Grand Prix for Outdoor at the Golden Drum awards in Slovenia, adding to the Gold PR Lion at Cannes, five golds and two silvers at the Dubai Lynx Festival, and a Grand Prix at the Cristal de la Mena.
The Hariri Foundation and Leo Burnett Beirut had the challenge of designing a campaign that would help to raise awareness about the inequalities and disadvantages suffered by women, and that would hopefully lead to widespread cultural reform. Lebanese women cannot give their nationality to their children if married to a foreigner. Lebanese women automatically lose custody of their children above 9 years of age in any divorce battle. Domestic violence against women is widespread. Lebanese women need to actively participate in society and stand up for themselves.
The Hariri Foundation’s research into depiction of women in the media and revealed that spoken and written words in the Arabic language are often assumed to be addressed to men, not women. The agency chose to tackle gender inequality with the use of the a “kasra” accent, transforming words to indicate that they were addressed to women. Lebanese women were called to “make your mark” by adding the red kasra accent on posters strategically placed in public places. Knowing that the Lebanese watch a lot of television, their favorite shows were used as yet another channel to communicate the campaign.
The integrated campaign was taken to the whole country with the use of a mobile interactive billboard, along with posters and stickers. The campaign was introduced digitally through emails, YouTube and Facebook. On International Women’s Day (March 8, 2009), TV personalities were invited to wear the “kasra” on air and endorse the campaign. As the highlight of the campaign, during a filmed event, the Minister of Education distributed stickers and encouraged prominent women in society to get metaphorically involved with the interactive billboard as well as literally involved on the ground.
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Khede Kasra was picked up by newspaper reports, magazine editors, bloggers and became the topic of everyday conversations. As hoped, the campaign sparked debates and roundtables about female regulations in the Lebanese judicial system.
The Khede Kasra campaign was developed at Leo Burnett Beirut by regional executive creative director Bechara Mouzannar, creative director Chermine Assadian, art directors Tania Saleh, Nayla Baaklini, Reem Kotob, Lea Salibi, Roula Asmar, art director/designer Yasmina Baz, Rana Najjar, copywriter Rana Khoury and Rana Najjar, deputy managing director Nada Abi Saleh, account executive Dima Kfouri.