By Lindsey Kin
Following my recent editorial desk article
titled Watershed Believes in the Walter Sisulu Paediatric Cardiac Foundation
, I recently chatted to Yvette Lee, senior creative consultant for the Walter Sisulu Paediatric Cardiac Foundation to find out more about the initiative, highlights during the campaign and the way forward with the Believe
Lee shared that many South Africans are unaware of the fact that 1 in every 100 children is born with a congenital heart defect. “95% of these can be easily corrected. Sadly, only 20% of babies and children in South Africa, and less than 1% on the continent of Africa, have access to any life saving treatment. The WSPCF makes this life saving surgery available and accessible to babies and children, giving them hope and a chance to say “When I grow up”, because without this surgery, they will die.” The aim of the campaign, explained Lee, “Is to ensure that we raise as much awareness around the project as possible. We need South Africans to participate by donating on an ongoing basis so that the foundation can continue to give access to this life saving treatment and continue to train and empower doctors from [other] African countries.” She understands the use of music to be universal and something that transcends age, race and religion. “What better way to bring such a strong message of hope and belief than with the beautiful Believe
Lee explained that the brief was to conceptualise a campaign that would stand out from the clutter of charities all requesting funds, build a relationship between the foundation and the donor and to inform, educate and personalise the plight of the children of Africa. “The message is simple: donate and give a child an opportunity to live a long and healthy life.”
As with many projects, one will inevitably encounter obstacles along the way, and for Lee, it was the budget. “I had no money to produce this campaign. I then reached out to the industry, beckoning friends and colleagues to donate their time and knowledge to this cause. An advantage of being in the advertising industry for so many years is that I have many very talented friends with large hearts.”
On the upside, a highlight for her was the completion of the project and seeing all the pieces of the puzzle fall into place, sitting in the editing suites at Ministry of Illusion watching talented people bring the music video to life. “Working with Tristan Holmes from Star Productions, shooting the music video with Craig Hinds and Watershed … everyone made magic in their own special way.” Other magical moments for Lee were shooting the stills with the children who epitomise the sentiment of the track Believe
and opening the box with the first printed copy of the CD which captured the journey and ethos of the project. “The most important highlight for me was when each individual that I approached, be they friends or colleagues, embraced the project, committed to a role and gave with their hearts and talent.”
During his first acquaintance with the CEO of the foundation, Lynda Bleazard, at the Netcare Sunninghill hospital and tour the facility, Hinds met some of the children who had just undergone surgery and experienced first hand the importance of the project; he went away and wrote the track Believe
and donated the sales of the track to the foundation – this track was the catalyst for the project.
“This project has no limitations and we are confident that over the next five years we will grow from strength to strength.” With phase two of the project already underway, Lee says, “South Africa can look forward to an even more exciting campaign in 2012.”
Lee concluded, “This campaign is the reality of our combined talent and determination; this project was conceived in love and implemented with conviction. Thank you to all my friends who brought this project to life and have each helped in their own unique way to help heal a child’s heart.”
To make a difference and heal a child’s heart, SMS Believe to 42400. Each SMS costs R30. Purchase your CD at any Look and Listen or download from your preferred supplier.