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A Touch of Care Stories From Vicks

Procter & Gamble’s topical, ‘Touch of Care’ campaign, for their Vicks Homecare brand, features emotive scenarios inspired by real life stories of heartfelt caring.

Consciously or unconsciously, we are all creatures of narrative influences, and stories are one of the imbedded ways we engage with society.

And stories of human endeavour, triumph, suffering, conflict, and compassion, from around the world, are how we find meaning, morality, and direction in the maelstrom of humanity.

Spearheaded by Publicis, Singapore, their creative focus in sourcing engaging, real life examples, of the uplifting difference a ‘Touch of Care’ can make, and bringing those compassionate stories to life with such pertinent communicative power, I find hugely commendable.

1. Vicks Homecare, Where Joy Lives

Advertising Agency: Publicis, Singapore

Directed by Zwelethu Radebe of Egg Films in South Africa, the online commercial titled ‘Where Joy Lives’ features the story of Lizo Tom, who was abandoned at birth.

Placed in a children’s home and into the loving care of Mama Abisana, he manages in adulthood, to find his sense of belonging, and becomes an important pillar of support to his local community.

Heartbreaking tragedy confronts him however, when his young son dies, and in seeking consolation, recalls Mama Abisana’s words; “We are not put on this earth for ourselves but for others. I am because we are.”

He decides to establish in Mamelodi, Pretoria, the ‘Luvuyo Center for Early Childhood Development and Care’ in honor of Abisana and his late son Luvuyo, to provide a haven of safety and care, children can call home.

As part of the ‘Touch of Care’ integrated campaign for South Africa, Springbok Captain Siya Kolisi was solicited by Vicks to amplify their brand message.

It’s a message that resonated with Kolisi. At the age of 28 he is already a father of four children. He and his wife lovingly opened their home to Siya’s two siblings after their mother passed away.

2. Vicks Homecare, Long Way From Home

Advertising Agency: Publicis, Singapore

Directed by Alan Harca, ‘Long Way From Home’, is about teenager runaway Sarah, who finds solace in the redemption of a caring teacher.

The Vicks Homecare commercial was conceived and produced in partnership with Mission Australia, a national Christian charity provider of community services, and Coles Supermarkets Australia, to motivate public support for people experiencing homelessness in Australia.

The important message is that all it takes is the caring action of a single person to make a difference to someone who has been brought down by life’s hardships, and uplift their life.

Because of that one caring person in her young, troubled life, Sarah is now a proud case manager with Mission Australia.

3. Vicks Homecare, Generations of Care

Advertising Agency: Publicis, Singapore

Superbly directed by Neeraj Gheywan, this remarkable ‘Touch of Care’ story of Gauri and Gayatri transcends social barriers, of not just class, geography, religion, and caste, but also of gender.

Orphaned as a young girl, Gauri is adopted by transgender Gayatri, who becomes Gauri’s devotedly loving new Mum.

On the ‘Indiaitimes’ portal Neeraj said he genuinely felt that the necessity to have the brand present throughout the story would risk the integrity of the film. It was essential to acknowledge that the emotion was of far greater importance and to their credit, Vicks wholeheartedly agreed.

He described his experience of working with Gauri Sawant, who played herself, as being the hero of the film.

“The overwhelming success of this campaign is because of the way she inspired all of us. One of the most poignant times in my interaction with her was when she said that apart from running an NGO to educate sex workers about AIDS, her team of 10-12 transgenders actually work on saving turtles. They have saved thousands of turtles.”

4. Vicks Homecare, Learning To love

Advertising Agency: Publicis, Singapore

Filmed in Manila, The Philippines ‘Touch of Care’ story is about how a young man’s life was transformed when he unexpectedly found himself taking care of an abandoned little girl.

Film Director Sheron Dayoc described Hernando’s story as a genuine example of how caring for someone can help change the way we view life.

“It will never be made of milk and honey, but we always have a choice to make it better.”

5. Vicks Homecare, Just a Boy

Advertising Agency: Publicis, Singapore

Directed by Alan Harca, The Philippines ‘Touch of Care’ story is a about Agnes who takes care of a baby boy abandoned by his biological mother, and is devastated when she discovers that her dearly loved young charge is HIV positive.

The commercial emotively addresses the misconceptions and misguided prejudices about HIV positive children that ostracises them from society.

Agnes’s story is an inspiring, real-life example of how the power of love can give a helpless baby the chance to survive like any other child.