* This commentary is not that of Clutch Magazine, please see source below.*

This is an actual ad-campaign by UNICEF Germany! This campaign is “black-facing” white children with mud to pose as “uneducated Africans”. The headline translates “This Ad-campaign developed pro bono by the agency Jung von Matt/Alster shows four German kids who appeal for solidarity with their contemporaries in Afrika”

The first kid says:

“I’m waiting for my last day in school, the children in Africa still for their first one.”

second kid:

“in africa, many kids would be glad to worry about school”

third kid:

“in africa, kids don’t come to school late, but not at all” (!)

fourth kid:

“some teachers suck. no teachers sucks even more.”

Besides claiming that every single person in “Africa” isn’t educated, and doing so in an extremely patronizing way, it is also disturbing that this organization thinks black-facing kids with mud (!) equals “relating to African children”. Also, the kids’ statements ignore the existence of millions of African academics and regular people and one again reduces a whole continent to a village of muddy uneducated uncivilized people who need to be educated (probably by any random westerner). This a really sad regression.

Bottom lines of this campaign are: Black = mud = African = uneducated. White = educated. We feel this campaign might do just as much harm as it does any good. You don’t collect money for helping people by humiliating and trivializing them first.

Unfortunately, if it was clear to the average German that this is wrong, UNICEF and the advertising agency wouldn’t come out with such a campaign.

Please write your opinion and help make clear and explain why it is wrong to use “blackface with mud”, and write to UNICEF at [email protected] as well as the advertising agency at [email protected] with a copy to Black German media-watch-organization [email protected] what you feel about this campaign and why. Please include a line that you’re going to publish your mail and the response. By the way, the slogan of the advertising agency who came up with this, reads “we communicate on eye-level”.


Noah Sow

NOTE: The pictures uploaded here are not in the same order in which they appear on the UNICEF site

Source: Alternet: Blogs

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  • Brandi


    But aren’t you tired of white people dressing up in blackface?

    I mean, with all the controversy that was going on at various universities in the US where white people dressed up as black people for Halloween, and now this–we as a people should be appalled that not only are black people looked at as comical beings that can be imitated in costume, but also that this behavior is supposed to be looked at as being okay because it’s supposed to help people relate to blacks. Honestly, just because you put mud on your face does not show any proof that you understand the plight of blacks–all it says is that you are ignorant and as someone said above, that you “just don’t get it.”

  • Happiness

    Actually, the advert is probably just an excuse to poke fun at Africans, as per usual.

    Now, I was born in the UK, but I am extremely happy that my parents sent me to live in Africa for 5 years where I had my primary school education. When I first arrived there at the age of 5 and started school, I couldn’t do any of the work because it was hard. At 5, the children in Africa are doing complex mathematical sums and not playing with dollies and toys like we used to in the UK in the early 1980’s.

    Most Africans are brilliant and bright. The only thing I can say about the educational system in Africa is that the University education could be better in terms of funding etc. However, that didn’t stop 5 of my cousins from achieving their goals and becoming Medical Doctors and working in the Canada, UK, Africa (various countries).

    So, just because some racist people set up an advertising campaign to spread false rumours about Africa, those of us in the know usually come out and say our piece. Don’t believe everything you read and see in the media, they are set up to make Black people look bad, most of the time.

    Besides, I don’t expect anything different from Germans, only yesterday I was on the tube in th UK, which was pretty packed, after searching for a seat, I came across a family who happened to be German and the man was looking at the tube map. In a polite manner I said excuse me as he was obstructing the seating area, he reluctantly moved out of the way and immediately said something in German and his wife burst out laughing and was looking at me. I sat down. Their daughter, who couldn’t have been more than 7 years old stared at me throughout the whole journey giving me dirty looks and cutting her eye at me. The father was also giving me side looks and the mother kept staring at me from head to toe. What horrid people. This is how they teach their children to be racist as well.

    This is not the first bad experience I have with them, neither. they seem to think they are more superior because of their skin colour. *yawn*

    So, I don’t expect anything good from them, I am afraid, and this “advertising campaign” doesn’t surprise me much.