BWM dentsu launches 'Disease Dilemmas' with The Garvan Institute of Medical Research

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The Garvan Institute of Medical Research has partnered with BWM dentsu to launch its first nationwide campaign, to raise awareness and funding for their ground-breaking genomics research.

There are thousands of disease-related charities in Australia. But unless you have a personal connection to a specific cause, this excess of charities creates a real dilemma – how do you decide who to help?

‘Disease Dilemmas’ puts Australians in the uncomfortable position of trying to choose who they’d donate to – the young mother with pancreatic cancer or the retired musician with Parkinson’s disease? The teacher with a kidney condition or the student with immune disease?

These impossible choices are brought to life as portrait pairings of real people living with different diseases, each execution posing its own unique dilemma that challenges people to think, interact and ultimately donate to Garvan, whose genomics research can help them all.

View the campaign website

Mara-Jean Tilley, Director, Garvan Research Foundation, said: “We are incredibly grateful to our 12 heroes, the men and women living with disease, who shared their personal stories in such a raw and powerful way. We know the power of medical research to change lives – we see it. It’s a privilege for the Garvan Institute to be able to share these stories and really articulate the hope that medical research can provide.”

All hero testimonials are based on a genuine connection to Garvan and were voluntarily shared to inspire and move the public to action.

Oskar Westerdal and Jon Foye, Creative Directors at BWM dentsu said: “Getting to know our heroes has certainly proven just how impossible it is to choose supporting one disease over another. Bringing these stories to life has been emotional, humbling and incredibly inspiring, and we are so grateful for the support of our director-photographer Simon Harsent, the Pool Collective and all our production partners who’ve made it all happen.”

The Garvan cause mobilised the industry to collaborate. Alongside the Pool Collective, the campaign counted on support from Fin, Rumble Studies and Bopper. From the dentsu network, Isobar, Haystac, dentsu Amplifi & Carat joined forces with BWM dentsu. The work is entirely pro-bono and includes strategy, creative, media, PR and support from the media partners.

Starting Monday 8 March with print, the media plan includes TV, radio, digital, OOH, cinema and takeovers in train stations and a sports stadium.

Says Marcus Tesoriero, ECD, BWM dentsu: “Charity overload is a real challenge for the Australian public, so we can’t wait for this campaign to fully roll out and tackle the issue in a variety of formats. In addition to screen exposure, the mass of media placements, that have been secured through dentsu media and our generous partners, have allowed us to physically impose disease dilemmas in busy public spaces, train stations and even sports stadiums – capturing people’s attention in a big way, showing how one donation gives to all.”


Says Brent Kerby, Managing Director, BWM dentsu: “There’s never been a more important time to support medical research. It’s been a privilege to use our expertise to introduce the Garvan Institute to the wider Australian public. I’m excited to say this was a true team effort, across the dentsu network and beyond, and we’re all very proud to be part of something that can help so many.”


The Disease Dilemma website can be found here:

Please find campaign assets attached and below:

Disease Dilemmas – Brian and Kathren – Teaser 30

Disease Dilemmas – Shervin and Nicole – Launch 30

Disease Dilemmas – Garvan Heroes Playlist


Garvan Institute of Medical Research

Viviane Richter

Phone: 0404 999 682


BWM dentsu

Mariel Malabanan | Haystac

Phone: 0416 512 890


About Garvan

The Garvan Institute of Medical Research is a leading multi-disciplinary biomedical research institute in Sydney. With 600 of the world’s brightest scientific minds working under one roof, collaborating across different areas of research and using the best technologies to investigate diseases, Garvan have revealed causes and treatments for diseases including diabetes, osteoporosis, cancer, immune deficiency and autoimmunity.