In my last letter, I shared our excitement about the 1in6 PSA campaign, in partnership with the Joyful Heart Foundation, NO MORE, and Viacom Networks. The awareness created by the PSAs and the Times Square billboards have been nothing short of remarkable. And, it is made even more remarkable when you realize that the entire campaign was an effort of true partnership, not costing 1in6 a single dime. NOTE: the effort did cost time and resources of our partners, and for that I am grateful beyond words.
As you may know, one of the three pillars of our work is creating awareness and dialogue around the issue of childhood sexual abuse of men. We hope that through that open dialogue, we can help de-stigmatize that experience for men, making it safer and easier for them to get help to heal. The statistics below show clearly that the PSA campaign indeed created awareness beyond our greatest hope:
As I reflected on the accomplishment of partnership and awareness-building, I was reminded that while the numbers and statistics are impressive, it is the individual man that matters most in our work. Having received numerous emails about the campaign from people all over the world, one particular email stood out for me. The man (a visitor to New York) wrote that he had decided to take a walk in Times Square, where he saw the 1in6 electronic billboard. He described pausing, astonished, to watch it, and then waiting to see if it would run again. Eight minutes later, it did. He waited another eight minutes, to see if it would return, and indeed, there it was! He told us he continued to just stand there in Times Square, watching it over and over again, every eight minutes. He had “never told anyone” (his words) about having experienced abuse, and maybe for the first time ever, he didn’t feel so alone.
So, while the numbers are impressive and we’ve established a new normal for web traffic, it’s the individual man who we remember as we continue our work.