Barnardo’s is the UK’s largest children’s charity, operating on the ground in every community in the country. While recognition of the name is high, there is a limited awareness of the breadth of their work and we needed to reach a more diverse audience, reflective of modern day Britain.

To reassert the relevance of Barnardo’s we ripped up the rulebook of children’s charity advertising, eschewing sad eyes and sorrow filled music for something far more powerful.

The Insight

No matter how tough the circumstances, children have an incredible ability to bounce back and transform their lives.

The Idea

Show Barnardo’s children as the heroes of their own stories, defiantly and directly addressing our audience.

The Film

Directed by Sara Dunlop, the film features five young children stepping up into spaces that represent the trauma they’ve experienced. Using powerful, mesmerising performances, the children demonstrate that no matter how dark their past, a brighter future awaits. Originally launched in 2016, the campaign has run as a 60 and 40 second TV edits as well as on cinema, and continues to run today. 

Individual Stories

We also created bold short films that dive deeper into the children’s stories, showing the full transformation they go through. Focusing on one child per film and shot in a single take each with their own haunting soundtrack, these beautifully raw performances show exactly what’s possible when you believe in children. 


Online content encourages deeper engagement with Believe In Me. Alongside the single stories, users can dive into the case studies behind the campaign and the work Barnardo’s does across the UK. A tailored approach has been adopted for each social channel, specific to its strengths, etiquette and the difference in user behaviour between each platform.


Print focused on individual stories with bold statements from the children taking them from victims to heroes. This ran in both national press and specific BME media placements.


awards won, including a Bronze at Cannes International Festival of Creativity.


street cast children with no previous acting experience.