Finch, Havas Worldwide Sydney, Reactive and Red build ‘most powerful arm ever invented’ for the Save Our Sons and the Duchenne Foundation


4C6C0728.jpgFinch and Havas Worldwide, Sydney have created the world’s first petition signing bionic arm for the Save Our Sons and the Duchenne Foundation to raise awareness for young sufferers of Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD).

Those who want to join the fight, simply need to visit, enter their details and then watch live as the Most Powerful Arm Ever Invented signs their name.

DMD affects 1 in 3,500 children (99% male), and sees a progressive deterioration of muscle resulting in loss of movement, leading to total immobilisation. Save Our Sons, has already raised $1.75m, half the money needed towards funding clinical trials, which if successful could put an end to DMD. The petition will be directed towards the Australian government who currently has no policy on research into DMD, asking them to match the amount raised to bring trials to Australia.

The robot arm was invented to do what many young DMD sufferers can’t – write. The arm takes its commands from the website, – where visitors can sign the petition by leaving their Facebook details on the petition database. This data is then shared with the arm, which tells the paper roller to feed the paper, and signs the name to the petition. When it’s done, a camera takes a picture and posts it to their Facebook wall. The website was designed and built by digital agency Reactive. Havas’ PR arm Red who have been instrumental in building the campaign’s communication strategy, will continue the drive into TV, print and other media avenues.

Says Emad Tahtouh, director of creative technology at Finch: “We wanted to help Save Our Sons, so we came up with this idea to build a robotic arm that can sign the petition on behalf of every Australian who supports the cause – even children with DMD, who through their condition have lost the ability to write, can sign it. The arm is capable of 8500 signatures a day – we’re aiming for 300,000 in total.”


4C6C0459.jpgThe face of the campaign is 19 year old, Jacob Lancaster (left), who was diagnosed with DMD when he was 5.

Says Lancaster: “Life with DMD has been a struggle. It’s hard to look forward and hard to look back. I am hoping the Most Powerful Arm Ever Invented will help stop this condition for others in my position.”

Says Steve Coll, executive creative director of Havas Worldwide Australia: “It’s The Most Powerful Arm Ever Invented because it has the power to save lives. To make the message even more powerful, we gave the robot the same handwriting as Jacob by creating a font taken from one of the last things he wrote before losing the ability to write, a Mother’s day card.”

The Most Powerful Arm Ever Invented will be stationed from Wednesday 27 March until Sunday 21 April, 2013 at Sydney’s iconic Customs House before moving to a secure location in Paddington, physically signing a petition on behalf of those who can’t and any other Australian who wants to support the cause.

Client: Save Our Sons & Duchenne Foundation

Agency: Havas Worldwide Australia

Executive Creative Director: Steve Coll

Art Director: Nicole Hetherington

Copywriter: Simon Fowler

Account Director: Marissa Davies

Production Company: Finch

Director of Creative Technology: Emad Tahtouh

Producer: Sophie Thiellon

Executive Producer: Rob Galluzzo

Director: Alyssa McClelland

Digital Agency: Reactive

Creative Director: Tim Buesing

Senior Project Manager: Hiedi Clague

Art Director: Gabriel Tamborini

Senior Developer: Sudeep Shakaya

Front End Developer: Luke Andersen

Chief Search Engineer: Chris Thomas (Reseo)

PR: Red Agency

Associate Director: Rachel White

Account Manager: Jennifer McDermott

Sound Design Company: Sound Reservoir

Post-Production: Cutting Edge