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Getting #kidsoffnauru with World Vision Australia

  • Interaction Design
  • Brand Design

Locking up children is never the answer.

Asylum seekers have been held in indefinite detention on the tiny island of Nauru in cruel and inhumane conditions without adequate health, education or employment options.

We partnered with World Vision Australia to launch the #kidsoffnauru campaign to focus attention on the 119 children stuck on the island, ahead of International Children’s Day.

The campaign mission was to unite the full Australian political spectrum and public behind a movement to end indefinite detention and the suffering of these children.

Campaign and brand strategy

The strategy demanded finesse and careful consideration, as it needed to be approachable for leaders and campaigners across the breadth of the Australian political spectrum.

It was important that the brand identity communicated the gravity of the situation, yet was also modern, inspiring, and easy for the thousands of staff, campaigners, and members of the general public to use.

Outdoor advertising for the Kids Off Nauru campaign

Visual identity

A strong statement formed the cornerstone of the campaign, based on the insight that most Australians feel comfortable saying ‘Locking up children is never the answer’.

Bold, simple and punchy—to match the strength of the campaign’s key slogan, we developed a visual identity with strength and clarity.

As a primarily social campaign, we took inspiration from the hash-tag that we knew would be ever present throughout the life of #kidsoffnauru, and transformed it into an abstract representation of the children, placing them in the centre of all the campaign communications.

The colour palette was drawn from the Australian flag, to link the campaign with a sense of national pride (or shame). The international community had criticised our treatment of asylum seekers, our brand asks the question “Is this an Australia I can be proud of”.

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Tools for growth

The simplicity of the brand meant that anyone from graphic design professional to informal community groups could create their own graphics quickly and easily, allowing the campaign message to spread organically and powerfully as a unified movement of support.

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The campaign captured the imagination of people and businesses alike and snowballed. Other not-for-profits jumped in to help spread the word, community leaders and celebrities lent their support day after day. 

The resulting groundswell of public support achieved the nearly-impossible, creating political change for children in need within the 90-day deadline.

Kids Off Nauru print advertising


By International Children’s Day, 102 of 119 children had been removed from Nauru. The Australian government has promised that all children will be removed from detention by the end of 2018, achieving a significant, long fought and inspiring human rights victory for the people of Australia.