Age UK and Channel 4 team up to shine a light on loneliness this Christmas

Channel 4 and Age UK have announced a brand new bespoke partnership to highlight the significant number of older people that will experience loneliness this Christmas.

The new campaign will air exclusively on Channel 4, with the first of three 30 second films launching on the 17 December during Celebrity Gogglebox at 9.30pm.

The campaign shines a light on new research from Age UK that finds 1.4 million older people are expecting to feel lonely this Christmas[i], nearly a million older people do not have anyone to celebrate Christmas with this year and that nearly one million older people will feel lonely this Christmas after losing a loved one[ii].

The creative borrows Channel 4’s iconic blocks and the voice of continuity announcer Isla Paton before turning to darkness as the audience hears from older people expecting to feel lonely this Christmas.

The campaign asks viewers to help Age UK Make Christmas a Little Brighter for lonely older people and directs them to the Charity’s website where they can donate to help Age UK meet an upsurge in demand for its Telephone Friendship and Advice Services, to support those that need it the most this winter.

4Sales and MG OMD offered key strategic input for the campaign and brokered the new partnership. The concept was developed through 4Sales’ creative arm PL4Y with Recipe, who were also responsible for production. Age UK’s research was carried out by Yonder.

Chris Braithwaite, Agency and Client Sales Leader, Channel 4 said: “Channel 4 has a long standing relationship with Age UK, working together on impactful creative campaigns that deliver an important message. We’re really proud to be collaborating again this Christmas to help raise awareness of the terrible loneliness experienced by too many older people at this time of year.”

Kathi Hall, Head of Brand & Content Strategy at Age UK said: “We’re excited to be working with Channel 4 again – together we’ve had some very successful Christmas partnerships in the past and I’m sure that this year will be no different. This partnership provides us with a powerful platform, which will help us to raise awareness of our Make Christmas a Little Brighter campaign. We’re hoping that as many people as possible take real notice of the films and donate to the Charity’s work – our Telephone Friendship and Advice Services are a lifeline to so many people, especially now during these challenging times.

Everyone on the team from MG OMD, Recipe and Channel 4 were fantastic, has worked collaboratively and at speed in order to create something really special for Age UK. It’s been a pleasure working with them!”

James Thompson, Executive Director, Head of Planning at MG OMD said: “It’s been great to have Age UK, Channel 4 and MG OMD working in Partnership yet again this year. By delivering a very important message in an impactful way we hope to draw attention to how so many people will be spending Christmas this year and encourage action to those that see it.”

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