United Colors of Benetton develops #IBelong Campaign in support of UNHCR’s aim to end statelessness by 2024
The United Colors of Benetton’s #IBelong creative campaign gives a face and voice to the world’s invisible stateless people. The visual tools and products developed by United Colors of Benetton will galvanize the general public helping UNHCR reach its goal of 10 million supporters in ten years to end statelessness.
At least ten million people worldwide are stateless and a baby is born stateless every ten minutes. Without a nationality, they are denied all the protections, rights and services that countries normally offer their citizens. Stateless people are often denied the right to education, health care, employment, freedom of movement. They are unable to do those things others take for granted like getting married, registering the birth of babies, or even having a proper burial or death certificate at the end of their lives. Stateless people often live their lives unseen, unheard and unrepresented.
Stateless people have done nothing to deserve this stigma; they are born stateless, will die stateless and will unfortunately pass their statelessness on to the next generation- unless this scourge is stopped. Often statelessness is a direct consequence of discrimination against their ethnicity, religion or gender. Twenty -seven countries deny women the right to pass their nationality onto their children, a situation that creates chains of statelessness that span generations. There is also a very real link between statelessness, displacement and regional instability. The strong visuals of the #IBelong campaign and an engaging online call to action that asks the public to sign an open letter to end statelessness form the creative backbone to this ambitious effort. United Colors of Benetton has created a beautiful and dynamic interactive map that will document the online support for the #IBelong campaign. All these visual, digital and online tools will allow UNHCR and campaign supporters to spread the message and galvanize support to end statelessness worldwide.
“It is an unacceptable tragedy that millions of people are living without a nationality. Unlike many other problems facing the world today, resolving statelessness is fully within our reach. We now have the opportunity, as never before, to tackle this injustice,” said High Commissioner for Refugees António Guterres, “With the United Colors of Benetton’s excellent support, I hope this campaign will reach millions and gain much-needed public support to end statelessness.”
Over its nearly 50-year history, United Colors of Benetton’s commitment to social issues has always been central to the philosophy of the brand. Its commitment has come across most strongly with its social communications campaigns and numerous collaborations with leading non-profit organisations, including UNHCR, UNDPI and UN Women, whose purpose has been to give voice to efforts to combat discrimination, social hardship, marginalisation, violence and lack of freedom, and to make the public reflect on and be aware of issues of universal relevance. This commitment has also found its natural outlet in United Colors of Benetton’s own UNHATE Foundation, which combats discrimination and promotes youth and art to encourage a culture of non-hatred.
In this spirit, Fabrica, the communication research centre of the Benetton Group, the company that owns the United Colors of Benetton brand, has developed the creative campaign #IBelong to support UNHCR’s efforts to end global statelessness.