UNICEF: Likes Don’t Save Lives

While over the past few years everyone has given social media tons of credit when it comes to activism and charity, UNICEF Sweden isn’t buying it.

Rather than encourage the public to like them on Facebook to raise awareness and create engagement for its cause, UNICEF Sweden is calling out the ineffectiveness of empty social actions when it comes to actual activism with its latest ad campaign created by agency Forsman & Bodenfors.

The ad reads “Like us on Facebook, and we will vaccinate zero children against polio.” Bam. There is also video that goes along with the campaign, which features a young boy in a slum talking about being scared of getting sick like his mother and worrying about who would then take care of his brother. The video  ends with this message: “Likes don’t save lives. Money does.” No sugar-coating going on here.

It’s true that many people are just posers when it comes to social and political activism. Social media has played large roles in social movements like the Arab Spring and marriage equality, but solely liking a page or Tweeting a link, while it may create awareness, doesn’t necessarily result in real world actions or change. Good for UNICEF for calling people out and encouraging them to actually put their money where their Facebook likes are.