by Britta Schmitz
UNITED NATIONS, Feb 27 2017 – The UN, UNICEF and the UN Foundation announced the launch of a new campaign to promote the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in cooperation with Sony Pictures’ The Smurfs. The campaign is called Small Smurfs, Big Goals and will be linked to the International Day of Happiness celebrated 20 March.
The Smurfs will raise awareness around the SDGs and educate a young audience on what they can do to support the seventeen Global Goals. The message is that as a team, anyone, even a small Smurf, can achieve big goals.
Last year, the UN appointed RED from the Angry Birds as an Honorary Ambassador for the International Day of Happiness.
“In 2016 we worked with Sony Pictures Entertainment on a very successful campaign to promote Sustainable Development Goal 13 – Take Urgent Action against Climate Change and its Impacts,“ Carlos Islam, Special Events Manager at the UN Department of Public Information, told Europa Newswire.
“Through this campaign we reached some 749 million impressions on Twitter and nine million views on Snapchat. The Secretary-General’s message for the campaign was viewed 415 thousand times on the UN Facebook and Sony Facebook pages alone. … There were at least 138 TV news broadcasts covering the campaign globally,“ said Islam.
This great success lead to a new cooperation with Sony Pictures. This year, the famous blue Smurf characters will raise awareness around the Global Goals. Belgian cartoonist Pierre Culliford, better known as Peyo, created the Smurfs in 1958. They initially began as a comic and later became famous through a TV series, movies and advertising.
“Following on from this success the UN Department of Public Information decided to work with Sony Pictures … again, using the Smurfs to help promote all seventeen Sustainable Development Goals through a campaign called #SmallSmurfsBigGoals in the lead up to the 2017 International Day of Happiness.“
As the Smurfs live in a cooperative village community called Smurf Village, with each member contributing to the well-being of the whole society, the blue comic characters are a perfect example of implementing the Global Goals within a community. The UN campaign playfully engages people to teach them what makes life in Smurf Village so happy and comfortable.
A website dedicated to the Belgian comic characters is the heart of the campaign. SmallSmurfsBigGoals.com provides information in several languages on how to support the SDGs by implementing small changes in everyday life.
“The idea is for the hugely popular Smurfs characters to inspire children, young people and adults to help make the world happier, more peaceful, equitable and healthy through action on the Sustainable Development Goals and by encouraging fans of the Smurfs to visit the SmallSmurfsBigGoals.com website, take a quiz, learn more about the SDGs and how to take action and to share the ideas on social media,“ said Islam.
The key-aspects of happiness for all are ending poverty, reduce inequalities and protect our planet. These aspects include the combat against climate change, women’s rights, peace, education, nutrition, health and a range of other issues that anyone can help achieving.
“In addition to the digital and online activation, there will be live events around the world on the weekend of 18-19 March 2017 where certain UN Information Centre offices and UNICEF local offices will collaborate with Sony Pictures Entertainment to best promote SDG messaging in the context of the campaign.“
To support the Smurfs campaign, voice actors from the upcoming Smurfs movie The Lost Village will attend a celebration at the UN Headquarters on 18 March. Famous actress and singer Demi Lovato is one of them. The famous attendees will honor young people who have already contributed to achieving the SDGs in their own communities.
“We plan to recognize the work of three young people in advancing the SDGs on a blue carpet,“ said Islam. “We also plan to present the campaign and the SDGs to a large group of Model UN high school students in the GA Hall the same morning.“