RNIB See the person

RNIB urges people to 'see the person, not the sight loss' in new campaign

The campaign from The&Partnership sets out to break down barriers for people with sight loss

By creative salon

Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) and The&Partnership have launched a new campaign ‘See the Person’ - challenging outdated public attitudes and misperceptions of sight loss to break down barriers.

The number one barrier faced by blind and partially sighted people in the UK is public misperceptions, the leading insight that inspired the campaign. Delivered with authentic storytelling and a through-the-line campaign strategy,

‘See the Person’ elevates the issue of sight loss within the public consciousness, setting out to change attitudes and behaviours towards blind and partially sighted people.

At the heart of the campaign sits an emotive and thought-provoking film, directed by BAFTA-nominated Jesse Lewis-Reece at You Are Here. The film tells the story of Ava, a fictional teenage girl who must come to terms with losing her sight. Her story is inspired by the real-life sight loss journeys of many, capturing an authentic experience of diagnosis, which often mirrors the five stages of grief - denial, anger, bargaining, depression, acceptance.

We see the impact that losing her sight has on many areas of her life, from education to relationships. Most crucially, the film demonstrates how sight loss can impact mental health as well as physical health. However, as Ava moves towards the acceptance stage, a theme of hope starts to emerge as the film continues. With the help of RNIB’s various products and services, Ava’s friends, family and educators offer their support, whilst an RNIB Eye Care Liaison Officer counsels her post-diagnosis. Ava starts to find her feet again, accepting her condition and regaining confidence.

In portraying the character of Ava, the lead actor, Eli London, drew upon their own personal experiences of sight loss, having had retinoblastoma in childhood, resulting in monocular vision. Jesse Lewis-Reece worked incredibly closely with London during production to fully understand the impact sight loss has had upon them, and their perspective was invaluable to the creative and film-making process.

To make the film truly accessible to a visually impaired audience, RNIB and The&Partnership, used a number of techniques when crafting the audio storytelling. These included: creating the voiceover to sufficiently tell Ava’s emotional journey, as well as creating a multi-layered soundscape that all audiences could fully immerse themselves in.

Additionally, Thom Yorke’s solo version of Radiohead’s ‘Videotape’ was chosen as the music track to accompany the emotional narrative, as it delivers a message of resilience and hope.

Martin Wingfield, Director of Brand at RNIB, said, “We need to explode the myths and misconceptions around sight loss which lie at the heart of many of the challenges blind and partially sighted people face – both every day and throughout their lives. So this campaign is important; it’s one of the biggest RNIB has ever run. It also has to be creative and clever as we think most people do want to make things better for people with sight loss. We are simply showing them how, and in the most compelling way possible. Everyone this campaign reaches will understand that even small actions play a big part in giving blind and partially sighted people the opportunity to live the lives they want to.”

Toby Allen, Executive Creative Director at The &Partnership, said, “At their best films are empathy machines, and we have pulled out every stop to make this campaign both deeply empathetic to convey the experience of sight loss to a sighted audience, and at the same time thoroughly accessible to the blind and partially sighted community. It’s a unique balancing act but Jesse and his team rose to the challenge.”

The ‘See the Person’ campaign has been supported by many partners, most notably the support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery through the Postcode Care Trust. To further elevate the issue of sight loss to the public,

RNIB is partnering with Channel 4’s Gogglebox. During Friday’s episode on 14th October, the cast will watch the campaign film, opening up the conversation about sight loss to the whole nation. The bespoke partnership was brokered by media agency, Wavemaker UK.


Client: RNIB

Director of Brand: Martin Wingfield

Head of Brand Engagement: Lorna Forbes

Brand Projects Lead: Susannah Kingham

Brand & Marketing Officer: Malcolm Wai

Agency: The& Partnership

CEO: Sarah Golding

ECD: Toby Allen

Creatives: Adam Jackson & Ted Price

Managing Director & Strategy Partner: Sarah Clark

Strategist: Ed Davenhill

Business Lead & Partner: Benedict Pringle

Account Director: Hannah Gray

Account Manager: Amy Brett

Head of Integrated Production: Charles Crisp

Producer: Joseph Tomlinson

Media Agency: Wavemaker UK

Production Company: You Are Here

Director: Jesse Lewis-Reece

Executive Producer: Jeremy Goold

Producer: Bill James

Director of Photography: Evangelos Polychronopoulos

Editing Production Company: The Quarry

Editors: Gary Coogan

Offline Producer: Tor Adams

Post-Production: Time-Based-Arts

Senior Post Producer: Dan Kreeger

Post Producer: Angie Broomfield

Colorist: Simone Gratturola

Audio Post Production: GCRS

Head of Production: Molly Butcher

Sound Engineers: Munzie Thind

Music Supervision: Theodore / Wake The Town

Music Contact: Arnold Hattingh

Composer: Thom Yorke, Johnny Greenwood, Colin Greenwood, Phillip Selway & Ed O’Brien


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