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ADreach wins 2018 AMASA Award for Best Pro Bono/Cause Related Campaign

ADreach is delighted at the awarding of the Best Pro Bono/Cause Related Campaign at the 2018 AMASA Awards for Heartlines’ Beyond the River.

The experience of being a part of the making of the film was rewarding and fascinating for the business as a whole, but having the opportunity to promote this incredible South African story on street pole advertising was not only an honour, but also a proof point of the effectiveness of the medium.

The story of Beyond the River is deeply interwoven with the story of ADreach, which is in part why we are so excited by the recognition given to the campaign by AMASA.

ADreach is a founding sponsor of the Soweto Canoe and Recreation Club, a youth development through sport initiative that was started in Soweto 16 years ago.

When the story of one of their young paddlers who had teamed up with an older experienced white paddler from Dabulamanzi Canoe Club to win Gold in the Dusi Canoe Marathon was selected by Heartlines to make the feature film called Beyond The River as part of their ‘What’s Your Story’ initiative, ADreach was committed to ensuring the success of this inspiring South African story.

ADreach had in the past seen the effectiveness of street pole advertising for clients who were international film distributors, so using our street pole advertising to launch Beyond The River was a no brainer.

The ADreach marketing team worked closely with the Heartlines team and together achieved one the most successful launches ever of a locally-produced feature film.

On receiving the AMASA Award, ADreach CEO and founder of SCARC, Brad Fisher, was ecstatic. “This award proves that the basics are still important. Take a strong story, combine it with clear creative and messaging, work closely with your client and ensure you reach your select target market – this is the formula for success.”

Beyond the River at the Sonoma Film Festival

Beyond the River, the 2017 South African film which touched the hearts of South African audiences, closed to cheers at its screening at the Sonoma Film Festival in California last week.

The film, loosely based on the true story of the sporting partnership between Piers Cruickshanks and Siseko Ntondini, was recently nominated for four SAFTAs (and won one for cinematography), and had been selected for the Sonoma Film Festival, in Northern California.

A South African contingent, led by executive producer, Brad Fisher, Ntondini, as well as Cruickshanks and Ntondini’s current racing partner, Sbonelo Khwela made the journey to California in the hope of spreading awareness of the film and the social consciousness around it.

An extraordinary invitation was also extended to the original duo (Cruickshanks and Ntondini) to address the Los Angeles World Affairs Council – an influential and connected audience – on the experience of their involvement in the film and its significance in the South African context.

Said Cruickshanks of the screening, and the experience as a whole: “It was fascinating to see US audiences – particularly the LA World Affairs Council members – hanging on every word when we spoke about race issues. There was a sense that we in SA are so much further down the line in that sphere and that they can learn from us – when we actually know that we, ourselves have so far to go and so much to learn. An incredible experience with several life highlights which I will never forget – especially speaking to the LAWAC and filling a cinema in Santa Monica to watch our all-South African produced film.”

The film, produced by South African NGO, Heartlines, tells the story of the experienced and gritty but partly broken Steve – played by Grant Swanby – and the lion-hearted, rookie-come-upstart from the squatter camp, Duma) and the confluence of their journeys to self-realisation.

The film’s success comes on the back of a 15-year partnership and social development project led by outdoor media company, ADreach. Ntondini, a long-time beneficiary of the project at just 23 years old says, “our club is not just about sport, it’s about the lessons one learns through sport and how to apply it to our education and chosen careers.”

The Sonoma Film Festival, now in its 21st year has established its niche in the American film festival market by screening 90 hand-selected films including independent features, documentaries, world cinema, and short films. The festival creates an opportunity for the film to gain some international traction, and, more importantly, to share a triumphant, good news, South African story in the context of world media currently beset with doom and gloom.

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