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Anti Abuse Dolls

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Amnesty international is a global NGO focused on drawing attention to human rights abuses in order to mobilise public opinion. It has been in Paraguay since 1991. 

In Paraguay, child sexual abuse is a silent threat. Every week new cases appear in the media. But most of them are never reported.   

Every year more than 700 unwanted pregnancies by girls aged between 10 and 14 are reported, that’s approximately two each day making Paraguay the country with the second highest number in all of LATAM. But what is seen is not the full picture of abuse. In fact, in April of 2015 the case of a 10 years old girl, who was 21 weeks pregnant after being sexually abused by her stepfather, shocked the nation. This case was followed by more cases as many girls found the courage to come forward and report abuses.  

Amnesty International decided it was time to step in to generate action, prevent and end these grave abuses on children. 

But this endeavour was not an easy one as the lack of sexual education in Paraguayan schools and at home caused by the taboos that surround the theme was an important barrier to get people talking and acting to stop these violations. 

It needed to reach to find a direct path to the potential victims to educate them, while at the same time, triggering interest and action from parents and teachers, moreover, the method had to be one that would immediately grab children’s attention and hands on educationally speaking.  


Research demonstrates that children need to have direct experience with the world in order to make sense of and learn about it, and toys, particularly dolls.  

Doll play lets children work through strong emotions.  

Amnesty International has used a doll to accomplish the objectives of preventing and educating about sexual abuse, targeting children and at the same time, involving parents and teachers.  

Research demonstrates that children need to have direct experience with the world in order to make sense of and learn about it, and toys, particularly dolls, are one way they can do this. Doll play lets children work through strong emotions.  

As the insights revealed, one of Paraguay's greatest disadvantages in regards to creating awareness around this delicate issue is that sexual education is absent from their schools and family talk because of Paraguayan cultural norms, and so this gave agency Kausa Havas an idea.  

It would use a doll to accomplish Amnesty International’s objective of preventing and educating about sexual abuse, targeting children and at the same time, involving parents and teachers.  

Because in 90% of cases the abuser is part of the family environment the intention was clear: it wanted to give children a tool to help them understand and learn how to react to an attempted abuse.  


Amnesty International released Aramí and Amaru, a doll to prevent the sexual abuse. When children pressed the doll’s private parts, it reproduced a sound alerting them with a message with a child’s voice.  

To amplify this initiative, the agency used a pure press release campaign and it started with a bang. It strategically distributed 200 dolls to Influencers, journalists, teachers and renowned psychologist in the capital and waited patiently for the effect. 

This resulted in free publicity, and as the dolls caught the attention of various journalists, it started to appear in various TV networks, local and foreign such as CNN, BBC, Red O Globo, Upsocl, Reuters, Telemundo and many others.  

The agency further amplified the initial effects with a concerted social media campaign based on a video that presented the doll and the current state of child abuse in the country. It was present on Facebook and YouTube.  

Emboldened by the initial results, in the second phase it created a manual to help school teachers use the dolls efficiently and to start talking about sexual education with their students. The manual was written in collaboration with psychologists and teachers.  


The campaign garnered a good deal of attention and substantial results. It achieved over 85 million media impressions, most of them free publicity, a first for any campaign in the country.  

The story was reported in all major Paraguayan, regional and global media outlets, with prestigious names such as: CNN BBC, Reuters, Telemundo and many others. 

Earned media value for these appearances was $15m. 

On its social channels, the campaign raked 2.2 million views on YouTube and increased AI’s fans on Facebook by 150% with such a limited amount of investment that it is not even worth mentioning, the 1st phase bore the brunt of the amplification effect.  

And the best bit? 

The level of acceptance this campaign had with children, parents, teachers and the Paraguayan society, not to mention the rest of the world was complete. 

The Paraguayan government took over the campaign by making the Anti-abuse dolls part of the 2017 educational programme. The teachers will use the dolls as prevention tools for children. 

Estrela, the most important toy producer in America, opened a factory in Paraguay to produce 20K Dolls destined to school.  

Argentina’s Ministry of Education is seeking to implement the same project.  

The OEI (Organization of Ibero-American States) requested dolls for the Indian communities of Paraguay and are translating the messages in the language or dialect of each community. 

It also received doll orders from countries like Argentina, Peru, Colombia, Mexico, Spain, and France.

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Amnesty International
August 2016 - June 2017
Kausa Havas (1)
Media Channel:
Direct Marketing,Online,PR
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