Why sorry is a bad word
When a baby is born, parents are usually showered with oohs, aahs and congratulations. The last thing most people would say to a new parent is “sorry.” Yet this is exactly what many parents with a newborn with Down syndrome hear from friends, family and even their doctors. Already heartbroken, ‘sorry’ offers more heartbreak. So what should well-wishers say? Literally, the only bad word is the ‘S’ word. This is the point the Canadian Down Syndrome Society (CDSS) is making in its new campaign, “Anything But Sorry.” Launching to coincide with Canadian Down Syndrome Week, November 1-7, the campaign aims to educate and inform people on how to react appropriately when a child is born with Down syndrome. The CDSS has released a humorous yet thought-provoking video called “The ‘S’ Word.” The video begins with a question: “What do you say to parents who just had a child with Down syndrome?” The answers are provided by people with Down syndrome, who offer suggestions of what you can say to new parents using every inappropriate phrase they know except “sorry.” The point is, the most inappropriate thing to say to parents of a child born with Down syndrome is “sorry” and that the birth of every child should be celebrated. Not only does the video educate about welcoming a baby with Down syndrome, it also gives the cast (many of whom were featured in last year’s “Down Syndrome Answers”) a platform to express their sense of humour and personality, shedding a more human light on the community and combatting stereotypes. Viewers of the video will be directed to AnythingButSorry.com, where they can help make sure that every baby born with Down syndrome this year gets a warm welcome. The website features a series of shareable e-cards with the same cheeky messages as “The ‘S’ Word” video. People are encouraged to visit and share a card to help reach the goal of welcoming all 9,363 babies born with Down syndrome in North America this year. When the goal is reached,a thank you video from the same cast will be released. The site also gives people the opportunity to purchase a set of printed “Anything but Sorry” congratulations cards, with proceeds benefiting the Canadian Down Syndrome Society. While the campaign targets those who might struggle with what to say to new parents of a baby born with Down syndrome, it also addresses the mixed feelings that parents might have about their own reactions to their baby’s birth. Since they are less likely to post a baby announcement on social media if their child is born with Down syndrome, “Anything But Sorry” uses the Facebook’s Life Events feature to offer them a second chance to add that missing post and celebrate the birth of their child with friends and family. Another component of the campaign is directed at doctors, who will be sent information by direct mail encouraging them to change how they speak to parents who have a baby born with Down syndrome. Like “Down Syndrome Answers,” “Anything But Sorry” also leverages Google AdWords to answer some of the top search queries made by friends and family when a child is born with Down syndrome. When people Google questions like “What do you say to parents who just had a baby with Down syndrome?” the top result will direct them to videos of individuals with Down syndrome answering their question—that you should say the same thing as you’d say to the parents of any new baby.
Country : Canada
Agency : FCB Toronto
Advertiser : Canadian Down Syndrome Society
Why sorry is a bad word