Home. A place where everyone should feel safe. A place of peace, love, and certainly not a place that becomes a violent battle arena. Sadly, it’s like that for some women – instead of receiving the respect they deserve, they are usually at the receiving end of a beating. What’s even sadder, it’s mostly up to the house objects that see, hear, live, and tell the truth. Just like these personified household objects that speak up about domestic violence in Brazil.
The situation is no different in Europe. In France, two women become victims of domestic violence every 5 minutes. However, instead of reaching out to support services, many young women choose to turn to the internet for help – or even worse, they decide not to seek help at all.
To give these women a voice and highlight the issue of domestic violence yet again, fair-profit company from California, TOMS, has teamed up with creative agency HarrimanSteel, French changemakers and a flourishing four-person girl crew, The Gucci Gang, and French youth non-profit En Avant Toute(s) to take a stand against youth domestic violence and create safe spaces for young women in France.
TOMS was born of a belief in a better tomorrow and since 2006, their community has been providing shoes, sight, and safe water to millions of people around the world. Now, in addition to these programs, TOMS is partnering with the changemakers and NGO’s “who are striving for progress – by creating, by inspiring, by doing.” The brand believes that it’s not just about wearing cool shoes, it’s what we do in them.
Known as the original purpose brand with their One for One concept—which helps help a person in need for every sold product—TOMS has evolved its model to inspire people to contribute to positive change in their local communities.
Lisa Hogg, Senior Director – Marketing & Giving at TOMS, talks more about the brand’s concept and targets: “TOMS is only able to create impact with the partnership of our consumers, so supporting issues that they care about and resonate directly with them is our focus. What we’ve aimed to do in FW19 is really provoke thought on the issue areas that we are supporting: these issue areas have been an output of qualitative research we have done to identify what our consumers are most concerned about.”
The members of Gucci Gang were first missing a space to share their experiences, feelings, and doubts about how they are treated by their intimate partners. They formed a group of four Parisian It-Girls of the 2000s and founded Safe Place – a community for young people to express themselves without judgement, break taboos, and offer support to one another.
The joint project was brought to life by HarrimanSteel, a brand experience agency founded in Amsterdam in 1999. Over the past two decades, the agency has worked with a range of bespoke lifestyle and cultural brands such as Patagonia, TOMS, Sonos, and Nike. The agency has built the ‘Stand for Respect’ changemaker program together with TOMS. The program is part of a broader global initiative titled ‘Stand for Tomorrow’. The project aims not only to raise awareness about domestic violence but also to give real support to young women in France.
From a creative perspective, HarrimanSteel were tasked with giving the changemakers a clear voice – and ensuring their messages resonate locally. The look is raw, authentic, and real, with a focus on the essence of the changemakers and their mission.
Julian Harriman-Dickson, ECD HarrimanSteel explains the role the agency played in making the Stand for Tomorrow: “We wanted to make a campaign with universal relevance – but that speaks to the local community. To bring across the energy and personality of the changemakers, we chose to craft a direction that landed the changemakers in their cities, in a way that felt authentic and human as opposed to polished and cold. The educational videos are provocative and confronting, and they’re calling on people to stand up for change. It was important that their personal commitment to these issues shone through. Because it’s all about their journey – in their shoes.”
Moreover, TOMS is going to provide an impact grant to non-profit En Avant Toute(s) as well as power a Safe Place event to extend support services, facilitate open dialogue, and drive change.
Until today, the ‘Stand for Tomorrow’ campaign has spread across the last three seasons, now shooting six different changemakers across Europe and Africa. This campaign is more pointed in its message; featuring sharp educational videos that underscore the severity of this issue.
Speaking of the partnership Lisa Hogg adds: “We have great partners in our changemakers to help us tell the story and I feel our partnership with HarrimanSteel has been seamless in terms of their team’s understanding of the sensitivities and nuances of our stories and at the same time, helping us to be relevant within the fashion lifestyle space.”
The Gucci Gang partnership is the first in a series of spotlights on changemakers across EMEA. The campaign will be rolled out across digital and social channels. You can also learn more about the ‘Stand for Respect’ initiative by clicking the link here.
Photographer: Nick van Tiem
DOP/Cinematographer: James Moriarty
Hair & Make-up: Anne Verhague