Fighting Ignorance With Information During Canadian Down Syndrome Week


By thelaegotist / / Learning that an unborn child has Down syndrome can be a confusing and stressful time for parents, who usually have only ten days to decide how to proceed with the pregnancy following the diagnosis. They often have many questions about what Down syndrome means to them and their child — When will they walk? When will they talk? How long will they live? Invariably, they will turn to Google for answers and the Canadian Down Syndrome Society (CDSS) with the help of FCB Canada is meeting them there with “Down Syndrome Answers,” a series of short videos that feature people with Down syndrome answering parents’ most-asked questions. After all, there’s no one better suited to answer those questions than people living with Down syndrome. Beginning yesterday, and coinciding with Canadian Down Syndrome Week (Nov. 1-7), whenever someone in Canada Googles a question about Down syndrome, the answer video will appear as a search results, providing honest and powerful answers to tough questions. A few examples are below: What is Down syndrome? Who gets Down syndrome? When do babies with Down syndrome learn to talk? How long does a person with Down syndrome live? Can people with Down syndrome play sports? Can a person with Down syndrome have a job? “The majority of prospective parents know very little about Down syndrome,” said Kirk Crowther, National Executive Director, Canadian Down Syndrome Society. “Doctors do their best and there are lots of websites offering the medical perspective but they typically use very clinical terms that don’t capture the emotional and human side of the Down syndrome story. We wanted to change that with ‘Down Syndrome Answers.’” “Just by casting real people with Down syndrome we start to dispel some misconceptions about the developmental disability,” added Jeff Hilts, Chief Creative Officer, FCB Canada. “But what will really make this campaign effective is ensuring people find the videos first when they turn to Google looking for answers.” FCB created the campaign pro bono for the Canadian Down Syndrome Society. The videos are hosted on YouTube and on the Canadian Down Syndrome Society website, Down Syndrome Answers Client: Canadian Down Syndrome Society National Executive Director: Kirk Crowther Treasurer: Ed Casagrande Board member: Ben Tarr Communications Manager: Kaitlyn Pecson Agency: FCB Canada CEO: Tyler Turnbull Chief Creative Officer: Jon Flannery Chief Creative Officer: Jeff Hilts Chief Creative Officer: Nancy Crimi-Lamanna ACD, Art Director: Simon Tuplin ACD, Copywriter: Pete Gardiner Producer: Judy Hamilton Editor: David Rodriguez Group Account Director: Anabella Mandel Account Manager: Joline Christiani Senior Strategist: Eryn LeMesurier Digital Strategist: Shelagh Hartford Production: Director: Elias Campbell Director of Photography: Stephen McLouglin Casting: Shasta Lutz, Jigsaw Casting