The Work for ALS campaign had ALS patients successfully asking the people of Belgium and Belgian CEO's to hire an ALS patient and donate the salary to find a cure.
120 CEOs were personally contacted and several of them responded positively. A TVC also called upon Belgian people to work for ALS and donate their salary to find a cure.
We didn't only show the devastating effects of the disease but also managed to get people to respond by donating a day's work to finding a cure.
ALS, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, is an incurable neuromuscular disease that paralyses one muscle after the other, leaving patients unable to move. Near the inevitable end, only the mind and eyes remain intact. ALS sufferers gradually have to give up on everything, their jobs, their hobbies, and in the end, their lives. One thing terminal ill patients and their families never give up on is the hope that one day their disease will be curable.
To find a cure we need money first. Unfortunately, rare diseases don't get a lot of funding. It's of no interest to the pharmaceutical industry and people tend to not donate to causes that don't affect their own lives.
The objectives of this campaign are to create awareness around ALS (make the public understand the disease, in order to feel empathy for ALS patients) and to gather donations to finance research for ALS treatment.
Describe the creative idea
What's your last resort when you can't get any fundings or donations but need money? You work for it, despite all limitations.
During World ALS day, ALS patients were looking for a job in order to fund a cure, as no one else will. A job where moving can't be part of the job description. CEOs were directly contacted by ALS patients asking for a job, and the salary to be donated. People were encouraged to join the movement and also work for ALS for a day.
Together we can work for ALS so one day there will be a cure.
Describe the strategy
World ALS day is a good moment to shine a light on the many problems patients are faced with. But in order to find a cure, we needed action. We needed the perfect mix of showing devastating effects of a problem, yet still activating people to do something about it.
First we had to raise awareness of the fact that for ALS patients there still is no cure in sight. Then we needed people to feel that there is something they can quite easily do to help.
The targets were the CEOs and working people of Belgium. ALS patients aren't really able to work for a cure, but you still can.
Describe the execution
The campaign was built in phases:
1: Inform. “ALS patients are looking for jobs to fund research. Hire them.” This message was sent by personalised letters and emails to 120 CEOs of major companies, posted on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and online videos. A specific website, www.workforals.be, was created where CEOs could hire patients.
2: Engage. “Join them and donate your salary.” Patients were hired and Belgians were invited to participate by donating their salary too. On national TV and radio, online videos, PR (an ALS patient presented the national Lottery results on Eén TV; another one presented the weather forecast on the number one French speaking radio in Belgium, Bel RTL radio), Facebook PPL.
3: Affect. “Today, we are working together for ALS. Share your contribution.” Message on social media by influencers (journalists and TV presenters). CEOs and employees followed on social media.
List the results
People see campaigns on terrible problems in the world everyday, but it often leaves them with a feeling of 'ok terrible, but what can I do about it?'. We were able to change that by reminding people you can easily work for ALS for a day. Awareness was raised for the funding problem rare diseases like ALS face, thousands of work days generated that helped fund the research to find a cure. Every workday bringing us closer to that 'one day' where ALS will be curable.
120 companies were reached out on Twitter.
More than 10 major CEOs hired ALS patients.
+254% donations: ALS patients can’t move, but they were able to move a whole country.
National PR coverage: TV Eén, Canvas TV, Bel RTV TV, Studio Brussel, Radio 1, Radio 2, Klara, Het Nieuwsblad, Gazet van Antwerpen, ...