Behind the Work: Girls Rise Up

Image from Child Q spot

Co-authored by Riannah Nicholas, Junior Olomowewe, Ayo Ogunyade and Ibrahim Shore

Following the case of Child Q, an unlawful and inhumane strip-search of a young Black child in a school in Hackney, Rise.365 briefed agencies to create a campaign highlighting the issues around this in modern-day society.

The Child Q campaign was an issue of discussion within VaynerMedia, and we felt it was an opportunity to genuinely stand up alongside the Black community against the discrimination of young Black girls within the UK.

At VaynerMedia, Community Resource Groups (CRGs) provide safe spaces, connections and support for each of its communities, encouraging inclusivity, allyship and advocation. The ‘VayNoire’ CRG helps connect those who identify across the African American, Caribbean, African and other black diasporas, to be empowered, elevated and celebrated.

From the inception, our VayNoire team in London led the approach to creativity, vision and our messaging, carefully ensuring we represented the Black community, thoughts and feelings towards the Child Q case.

Their process, in order to really capture the right message, was driven by two objectives. The first was to increase awareness of the realities of young Black girls within society, while giving young Black girls the platform to truly express themselves authentically. The second, tying heavily into our creative process and production, was to empower the young Black community on a larger scale, giving the space for them to feel part of the creative process, and visualising their feelings, opinions and life experiences.

We brainstormed various ideas and concepts, and unanimously felt that the use of spray boards and highlighting other letters of the alphabet – each standing for a unique meaning – created a strong image and the right balance between social injustice efforts and their objectives.

What is shown in the picket signs, which the young Black girls from Rise365 created and hold in the campaign, is the message: “The alphabet comes to an end, the injustice for ChildQ should too.”

During the production for the advertisement, the girls came up with their own meaning for each letter, for example, “Child B is Beautiful”, “Child P is Powerful”, “Justice for Child E” and, crucially, “Child Q is a Child”.

We really wanted their aspirations to be seen, loved and cared for, front and center. The message “Child Q is a Child” aims to show that young black girls need to receive the same protection, perception and nurture that every child deserves. 

Our collaboration with Rise.365 and Clear Channel is an integrated campaign consisting of media content, a short film and OOH work displayed on billboards across the UK. The space has been very kindly donated by Clear Channel.

We hope this brings the case and its related issues to a wider audience. VayNoire is eager to take on any future projects which tackle the issues faced within society by the Black community.