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A Chance Encounter Bears Fruit for m2m

11 February 2014

You never know where a chance encounter will take you, or what can grow and develop from seeds planted in a five-minute conversation. When mothers2mothers sat down for tea with Sir John Hegarty, Founder of BBH, one of the largest advertising agencies in the world, we never could have imagined where that conversation would end up. Eight months later, what started as little more than a creative brainstorm in a teacup developed into a fruitful pro-bono relationship.

When Sir John Hegarty heard about mothers2mothers’ work, he was struck by the strength and simplicity of the model and wanted to, in his words, “get behind a movement […] that genuinely can make a difference.” With the leadership of two South African creative directors at the London agency, the talented team set out to create two pro-bono video assets that not only told the story of the challenges faced by women in sub-Saharan Africa, but also gave viewers an intimate view into the heart of m2m’s work through a Mentor Mother’s personal story.

The first video, “A World Apart,” sets out to create a dark, uncomfortable experience; one that spikes the conscience and sparks conversation in order to redress the traditional narrative on the AIDS pandemic and challenge the viewer’s perception of a “sub-Saharan problem.” It asks them to walk in a western setting they know only too well, but in shoes that they don’t, those of an HIV-positive pregnant woman in sub-Saharan Africa.

While the first video highlights the dark side of what many HIV-positive pregnant women in Africa experience, the second video, “A World with mothers2mothers,” explores the light provided each and every day by m2m’s Mentor Mothers. It tells the inspirational story of how Denise overcame her fear that the world was “giving up” on her when she learned she was not only pregnant, but also HIV positive, and has gone on to help so many other mothers facing similar experiences through her work as a Mentor Mother.

The videos were launched a week before World AIDS Day, on the 25th of November, alongside m2m’s brand new website which was also designed as part of the pro-bono relationship with BBH. Since then, the videos have attracted both attention and celebrity support, generating over 58,000 views on YouTube.

If you haven’t had chance to visit m2m’s new digital home and see the provocative new videos, the fruits that developed from that first conversation over tea, click here.

After all, who knows where your next conversation, online or off, will take you.