Brothers for Life ad shows 18 women raped during State of the Nation Address

Posted: February 25, 2013

A hard hitting ad was placed in The Sunday Times on behalf of Johns Hopkins Health and Education in South Africa and its Brothers for Life initiative. Strategised and executed by agency Joe Public, the company says that as a national campaign dedicated to promoting healthy lifestyle and behaviour choices amongst men, Brothers for Life felt compelled to get involved.

'A woman is raped every four minutes in South Africa and our rate of sexual violence is amongst the highest in the world," says Joe Public's Executive Creative Director Xolisa Dyeshana. "Given the spate of heinous crimes against women that continue to flood the media, we saw the annual State of The Nation Address as the perfect opportunity to voice Brothers for Life's stance."

"We placed a large-scale communication in The Sunday Times newspaper that featured a transcription of the address in its entirety. At timed four-minute intervals, we placed the words '1 woman' throughout the speech. We tied it all together with this copy: DURING THIS STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS, 18 WOMEN WERE RAPED IN SOUTH AFRICA. WHAT DOES THAT SAY ABOUT THE STATE OF OUR NATION?

The copy went on to call upon South African men to unite against rape. It ended off with the hashtag '#brothersunite', so that people could tweet about the campaign and air their thoughts in a collective space. The hashtag will also be used by Brothers For Life going forward as we extend the campaign to target gender-based violence as a whole."

The agency's aim is to unite South African men as people who actively oppose violence against women and children. "After all," says Xolisa, "alone we can do so little, but together we can do so much."

2013-02-25 ~ Stop Rape

About Brothers for Life

Brothers for Life was launched on the 29th of August 2009 in KwaMashu and seeks to address a range of social issues; such as the risks associated with multiple and concurrent partnerships, sex and alcohol and gender based violence (GBV) while similarly promoting HIV testing, male involvement in PMTCT, medical male circumcision and promoting positive, healthy male norms.

The Brothers for Life campaign is the South African national men's campaign and is a collaborative effort between the South African National AIDS Council Men's Sector (SANAC), the Department of Health, USAID/PEPFAR, Sonke Gender Justice (SGJ), Johns Hopkins Health and Education in South Africa, the United Nations system and over 100 NGO partners. Funding for the campaign has largely been through the United States Agency for International Development and the US President's Agency for AIDS Relief, UNICEF and the Danish International Development Agency.