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'Hidden' Spanish child abuse ad goes viral

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'Hidden' Spanish child abuse ad goes viral
"On the first day the billboards went up we had 30 calls from kids who had seen it and needed help," ANAR director Tomás Lagunas told The Local. Photo: Youtube
15:16 CEST+02:00
A high-tech advertisement by a Spanish charity which fights child abuse has become an internet sensation around the world.

ANAR’s billboard campaign has made international headlines because of the innovative lenticular lens used to direct different messages to children and adults.

While adults get to see a general ad warning about child abuse with a close-up of a young boy, children under a certain height see the protagonist battered and bruised as well as a help hotline and the message: “If somebody hurts you, phone us and we’ll help you”.

“It’s been a very pleasant surprise,” ANAR’s director in Spain, Tomás Lagunas, told The Local. “We’ve never made use of media campaigns to reach out specifically to children before but on the first day the billboards went up we had 30 calls from kids who had seen it.”

The innovative posters went up in cities across Spain a week ago and in the last 24 hours the story has featured prominently on international media and social networking sites like the BBC, Daily Mail, Facebook and Twitter.

Lagunas thanked the billboard companies for offering the spaces free of charge and praised advertising company Grey Group Spain’s creative directors for coming up with such an original idea.

“The phone hasn’t stopped ringing over the last couple of days and many people may not have been able to reach us because the lines were busy,” Lagunas told The Local.

“That’s our main problem. We received 324,000 calls from children needing help last year and many more who were probably not able to get through to us.

"We don’t have enough funds to hire more child psychologists nor to install the hotlines to cater for all the children who need them.”

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