ITV Left Little Voice Notes All Over London to Fight Loneliness
Words of support and encouragement make lives feel less lonely. With that in mind, British broadcaster ITV celebrities recorded audio messages of hope that ran during Mental Health Awareness Week in the U.K. from May 9-15. Their goal: Encourage the public to connect in the same way with friends and family members battling sadness and isolation.
But this wasn't a typical PSA campaign. More than 100 placements developed by agency Uncommon popped up around London in unexpected places, including bus stops, street kiosks, fast-food shops, and even on takeaway pizza boxes via scannable stickers.
Click the images to enlarge and scroll through:
"Just hearing someone's voice has been proven to reduce stress and anxiety," Uncommon says in a blog post. "Voice notes are an easy way to reach out and let someone know you're thinking of them. And you can record them just about anywhere."
This Morning and Dancing on Ice host Phillip Schofield's empathy shined as he told listeners, "When you're lonely, you can't see a way out of it. Trust me, I have been there ... But helping a friend who's feeling lonely, now that's different, couldn't be simpler."
RuPaul's Drag Race U.K. winner The Vivienne offered a vivacious salutation: "Hello, you gorgeous creature—what a pleasure this is to be so close to your ear hole!"
And meteorologist Alex Beresford kept firmly in character, noting, "Us Brits, we're good at talking about the weather ... I wish we were as good as talking about other stuff. If you know someone who might be feeling lonely, don't wait for them to open up. Make the first move and send a voice note."
Network personalities Laura Whitmore, Charlene White, Liberty Poole, Maggie Alphonsi, Maura Higgins and Vick Hope also recorded memos.
The work falls under the broader "Britain Get Talking" mental-wellness push backed by charities Mind, YoungMinds and SAMH, and launched via Uncommon for ITV three years ago.
"The pandemic brought young people isolation from friends and family, disruption to their education and also reduced access to support," says YoungMinds CEO Emma Thomas. "We know many are still feeling the impact of these things, and it can be difficult to interact with loved ones in the way you would usually when you're struggling. Feeling lonely can have a negative impact on your mental health, and young people who are struggling with their mental health also often feel isolated or alone. That is why it's so important to know that there is someone you can talk to about how you're feeling."
Hear more voices notes below.
Project name: Voices Against Loneliness
Creative Studio: Uncommon