Press Releases and Statements
Benetton for Kosovo.
An international communications campaign in co-operation with the United Nations High Commission, “Missione Arcobaleno” and other humanitarian associations
Ponzano, 23rd April, 1999. The deep red of a bloodstain on a white field to remind to the world the value of peace and to support the humanitarian action for the people of Kosovo. This is the symbolic image of Benetton’s new communications campaign, which will appear well before the normal autumn issue date, has been developed together with aid organisations, primarily the United Nations High Commission for Refugees, which are working to provide help and welcome the refugees.
Created by Oliviero Toscani and published in major newspapers in Europe and in the United States, the campaign carries side by side the logos of United Colors of Benetton and the United Nations High Commission, together with its toll-free number and current account details to make citizens aware of the urgent need for concrete aid programmes. In Italy, Benetton’s campaign also supports the “Missione Arcobaleno”, the “Consorzio Italiano di Solidarietà” and the “Associazione per la Pace” to contribute to the collection of funds, which is already proving to be outstanding in terms of the amount and generosity of donations.
With this initiative, Benetton has chosen to face reality, to provide a strong and concrete answer to an extremely serious problem. Once again, the company has decided to be actively committed, making available to an humanitarian programme, the resources and experience gained during more than 10 years’ in international communications collaborating with organisations such as the United Nations, FAO, Caritas, Red Cross, SOS Racisme and with about forty bodies involved in the fight against Aids.
“The only form of communication that doesn’t seem to notice that we are at war is advertising. We are seeking to make up for such thoughtlessness with this image, hoping to attract the attention of those who want to be really commited to humanitarian aid. We make no distinction between victims amongst the attackers and those who are being attacked. Children, women and old people, whether killed by bombs or as a result of ethnic cleansing are still children, women and men. This mark will stain the pages of our newspapers alongside advertising that wishes to gloss over and wipe such images from our consciences”, affirms Oliviero Toscani.
The deep red of this new campaign also aims at bringing the attention of all citizens on the horrific events in Kosovo, as did the image published in 1994 of the blood-stained clothes of the soldier Marinko Gagro, who fell during the Bosnian war and the long rows of crosses in a war cemetery, published in 1991 at the begining of the Gulf war.
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