In the spring of 2016, Sweden was experiencing the largest flood of refugees into its borders in the country’s history. One of the many challenges this deluge of people brought with it was the need to find housing for the over 160,000 new residents in a country that was already experiencing a housing shortage. Kommunes and towns exhausted all available resources and filled all available beds, renting hotel rooms, using church or community center floors, even occupying summer vacation cabins not insulated for winter weather. And still there was a need for more beds.
Laholmshem decided to appeal directly to residents it the area, asking if they by chance had an extra room or apartment or summer house that could be rented. While they had no greater expectations of receiving a large response, they felt they had to do something. They turned to Buddy to find a creative and persuasive way of making this appeal to residents.
The project had little expectations of success and an even smaller budget. A postcard and basic landing page were all that could be afforded.
Buddy landed on a concept that would play on both European history and national pride, using famous historical figures as an example of others’ hospitality coming to the rescue. In this “mini” campaign we used stories illustrating King Gustav Vasa of Sweden and King Charles II of England and how their lives – and the futures of their nations - were saved by the hospitality of strangers. All in an effort to persuade others to do likewise in the current, challenging times.
Response was dramatically over expectations and feedback to the commune and its housing company was overwhelmingly positive. And beyond our creative pride in a job well done, we were happy to have played even a small part in helping Laholm deal with the refugee crisis and to help these people in need.