NYPD Uses Mannequins to Try and Find Missing Boy

The New York Police Department and BBDO New York are taking the search for missing persons beyond the milk carton. In a project called “Invisible Faces,” the face of a boy who disappeared six years ago will now appear on a store window mannequin in an effort to reinvigorate the search and possibly lead to his return. Agency BBDO created the concept, and worked with the NYPD to execute it. Patrick_3x2_

Seven-year-old Patrick Alford Jr. went missing from his foster home in 2010; his face, aged to 13 years old, has been sculpted onto a mannequin in the store window of jacket brand K-Way, which has a store located in SoHo, one of Manhattan’s most well-trafficked shopping neighborhoods. The mannequin is clothed in a similar red t-shirt to the one Patrick was wearing when he disappeared.

If any passersby or store visitors recognize Patrick’s likeness, they are encouraged to use an in-store iPad to learn more. The agency has also put together the website www.invisiblefaces.info and the hashtag #bringPatrickhome to spread the word.

The store window will remain up until the middle of May.

 

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Ad Love : Dillan Barmache’s story

Dillan Barmache couldn’t speak. Then he got an iPad.

Dillian, who is 16, has autism and is non-verbal, stars in a powerful new advertising campaign from Apple, launched in observance of World Autism Acceptance Day.

After spending his whole life struggling to communicate, Barmache learned to express himself with the help of his tablet—typing his thoughts and feelings, then letting the computer speak them for him.

Titled “Dillan’s Voice,” the two-minute commercial from TBWA\Media Arts Lab focuses on Barmache’s experience, in his own words.

Check out the ads:

Viacom’s Witness the Power of Story

Viacom is aiming to get people to pay attention by projecting statistics directly onto buildings. Viacom teamed up with Witness, a human rights organization for a series of PSAs, “Witness the Power of Story.” The spots are being rolled out across Viacom’s networks, including MTV, VH1, CMT, BET and Spike.

The PSAs draw attention to each network’s social good campaigns, which are geared toward their specific target audiences: Look Different, MTV’s effort to combat gender bias; VH1 Save the Music Foundation, which is dedicated to keeping music education in public schools; CMT Empowering Education, an initiative to improve rural education; BET’s What’s At Stake, a campaign for empowering African-American millennials, and Spike’s Veterans Operation Wellness, a campaign for veterans’ health issues.

The PSAs include shots of these statistics and reactions from passersby, and each spot directs viewers to a website, Witness.Viacom.com, which includes links to the networks’ charitable initiatives and encourages people to upload photos or videos showing how they’re making an impact to Instagram using #story4change. Viacom also hosted a video booth at South By Southwest for the campaign, asking attendees to record their experiences with these issues.

Take a look and what went into getting the campaign to come to life:

Ad Love: CVS and #BetheFirst

Drugstore giant CVS Health and its foundation plan to spend $50 million over five years to bolster anti-smoking efforts with a particular emphasis on young people.

The company recently announced plans to fund Be The First, a campaign that draws its colloquial inspiration from a goal to form the first generation of Americans to spurn tobacco.

The push comes more than a year after CVS stopped selling cigarettes, saying that smoking conflicts with its mission of promoting healthy living. CVS and the CVSHealth Foundation will share the costs of the campaign. Be The First will emphasize education programs, social media and marketing initiatives through groups such as the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, Scholastic Inc., the American Cancer Society and the National Urban League.

Cigarettes and secondhand smoke cause cancer and other preventable diseases.

CVS set several concrete goals for the five-year campaign: cutting the national youth smoking rate by 3%, reducing the number of new youth smokers by 10% and doubling the number of college campuses that ban tobacco usage.

Check it out:

Some Airlines Actually Care.

You’ve seen me banter back and forth with airline carrier Jet Blue. Part of the reason I use them is because they have a great customer service and social customer care acumen.

Recently, GetAirHelp, a legal service that seeks compensation for passengers when a flight has been canceled or delayed, released a survey ranking 34 airlines, not only on performance and delays, but on whether — and how quickly — those airlines are willing to settle up with passengers seeking compensation.

The highest ratings go to Qatar Airways and KLM, while easyJet and SATA International (a Portuguese airline) bring up the rear, according to AirHelp’s survey. The three American companies that were ranked fall solidly in the middle, with Delta leading the way, followed by United and American.

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To use AirHelp’s service, fliers enter the details of a delayed or canceled flight online and AirHelp initiates a claim with the airline.

To date, the business says it has helped nearly 350,000 people file claims and collect more than $33 million in compensation. Along the way, the service has amassed vast amounts of data, which informed the latest survey. The survey ranked the airlines on the following:

• Quality performance, using the scores of Skytrax, an international research organization that publishes independent reviews and ratings of airlines.

• Delay performance, based on departure times in the fourth quarter of 2015.

• Claim processing, using data based on how an airline handles and processes claims, including wrongful rejection of claims.

Here are the 10 top-ranking airlines and their AirHelp scores. I wonder why Jet Blue didn’t make the cut?:

1. Qatar Airways, 8.9
2. KLM, 8.5
3. Air Baltic, 8.2
4. Air France, 8.2
5. Lufthansa, 8.2
6. Air Canada, 8
7. Emirates, 7.9
8. Croatia Airlines, 7.9
9. British Airways, 7.8
10. Finnair, 7.8

Here are the American rankings:

15. Delta, 7.6
20. United, 7.4
21. American, 7.35

Here are the bottom 10:

25. Norwegian Air Shuttle, 7.1
26. Icelandair, 7
27. Alitalia, 7
28. Iberia, 7
29. Aer Lingus, 6.8
30. TAP Portugal, 6.8
31. Swiss, 6.4
32. Virgin Atlantic, 6.2
33. easyJet, 5.8
34. SATA International, 5.2

It’s Lit (thanks to Akon).

One of the first celebrity philanthropic projects I worked on was over a decade ago under the helm of Senegalese -American R&B singer, Akon. It was with the Konfidence Foundation which concentrates its efforts in Senegal and West Africa to empower individuals, communities and nations.

It’s great to see that he’s still dedicated to doing great work.

Recently, Akon launched an ambitious project to provide millions of Africans with electricity through a groundbreaking solar power initiative: Solar Academy. The academy, scheduled to open in the Mali capital of Bamako, will train locals to install and maintain solar-powered equipment.

The Solar Academy is under the umbrella of the singer’s Akon Lighting Africa (ALA) initiative, launched in 2014 to bring solar power to Africans who currently live off the grid. Akon’s ALA initiative, in partnership with Give1Project and ADS Global Corporation SA, has already provided solar power to more than 1 million households. ALA has installed solar-powered streetlights in more than 11 countries on the continent.

The initiative includes installing solar-powered streetlights and residential solar systems in African villages, as well as solar tailored equipment in households. There are an estimated 600 million people in Africa who live without electricity.  Twenty-five African countries are experiencing an energy crisis, according to the World Bank.

Take a look:

Nas Lends a Hand (and Diversity) to Tech

A new fund is being created by General Assembly, a private New York City technical school, which has the goal of addressing the lack of minority representation in the tech sphere. Dubbed,”The Opportunity Fund,” it will offer scholarships to women, veterans, African-Americans, and Latinos, all groups who have historically and systematically been denied equal access to the sciences. Nas, who has stepped up his involvement in the tech world in recent months, is joining Google, Microsoft, and Hirepurpose as one of the fund’s backers.

Nas’ QueensBridge Venture Partners project will provide the funds for scholarships to African-Americans and Latinos, while Google will fund women and Microsoft and Hirepurpose will pay for veterans to attend the school.

The New York rapper, with several platinum albums and Grammy nominations under his belt, is gaining cred as a tech investor. QueensBridge Venture Partners has backed start-ups from Dropbox to Meerkat to Lyft. The firm is also backs Walker & Co Brands, of which I am a fan. Here’s more about that company: