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SDG3 target 3.4: By 2030, reduce by one third premature mortality from non-communicable diseases through prevention and treatment and promote mental health and well-being.


million people reached

Where: The Netherlands

The challenge:

Loneliness in children is an underexposed problem, with research showing around 1 in 10 children feel lonely. Social contact and interaction is extremely important for the emotional and cognitive development of a child, and a sad fact of life is that lonely children often make lonely adults.  

No child should feel lonely. We teamed up with UNO to create a brand awareness campaign that expresses the brand’s vision of connecting people, especially children, through games. But first we had to understand how kids were feeling. 

The execution: 

To obtain the necessary insights we worked with Hof ter Weide primary school in Utrecht, speaking to kids aged 7-12 and their teachers about their experiences. These interviews provided six key insights: 

  • Children often don’t know what to play - a typical form of choice stress
  • Children requested a database of their games
  • Children said they would like a meeting point
  • The school would like to encourage kids to make new friends
  • The solution should be something that stimulates the imagination
  • The solution should be created in a universal language  

Equipped with this knowledge, we created the UNO ‘Let’s Play Along’ playground, a playset which connects lonely children in the schoolyard. It takes the form of a life-size pawn, placed in half a circle. Children can turn the ‘N’ knob during playtime, after which a game appears that children can play together.  

Every child who stands within the half-circle participates in the game being played, with the school instructing that no one can be excluded who is in the circle. That way, no child needs to ask if they can play along. It lowers the threshold for lonely children to play along, making it easier to all play together.  

We used the footage of the launch to create social videos and digital out of home posters for social media, as well as out of home to raise awareness of this underexposed problem and reach a large audience with a social brand message.  


The results:

The launch of UNO ‘Lets Play Along’ was a huge success for the kids in the playground - but also for UNO’s brand awareness campaign. Working with a total budget of €55,000, the campaign achieved a colossal total reach of 24.4 million people thanks to OOH, non-paid and paid social media and PR activity, whilst driving more than 100 applications from schools for their own UNO Playground. 

Check out more inspiring examples of our work on SDG3.