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Award winning campaign

 CIPR Excellence Award

St John Ambulance has won a Chartered Institute of Public Relations (CIPR) Excellence Award for best broadcast campaign.

The judges said Helpless, which has so far saved at least four lives, was impressive and showed a brilliant understanding of what broadcasters were looking for.

The campaign has also won advertising awards, such as the industry Oscar, a Gold Arrow, and is currently shortlisted for a Marketing Society Award for Excellence in the not-for-profit category.

Campaign message

The Helpless TV advert which first aired during ITV1's Downton Abbey on 16 September 2012 highlights that up to 140,000 people die each year in situations where first aid could have saved their lives – as many as die from cancer.

The hard hitting film follows the journey of a man who is diagnosed with cancer, undergoes treatment, and survives only to die as a result of choking at a family gathering because no-one knew the basic first aid that could have saved his life.

By learning first aid more people can be the difference between a life lost and a life saved.

Our Helpless page provides links to:

Strong impact

Since the launch of the campaign
  • there have been nearly 15 million TV views of the advert
  • over 20,000 people have requested a free pocket first aid guide
  • and over 30,000 people have downloaded the charity's free first aid app.

Sue Killen, St John Ambulance Chief Executive, said: ‘The results of the campaign are very encouraging and show that our message is being taken seriously. The response has been overwhelmingly positive and we’re delighted that it’s had the desired effect of equipping more people with basic first aid knowledge.’