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United Colours of Blood

bloodThe United Colours of Blood anti-racism campaign was launched by EMMA on 14 August 2001, following a series of U.K. race riots.

This campaign, designed by Saatchi & Saatchi, was placed in bus shelters all over Oldham, the location of several race riots earlier in the year.

Unveiled in August 2001, EMMAs, anti-racist campaign United Colours of Blood was created after the race riots in Bradford, Oldham and Burnley.

The aim of the campaign was to highlight a common bond between human beings and to give the communities the chance to work together in donating blood for each other.

The Blood Donor campaign was a huge success with local authorities organising several blood bank centres. EMMA Media received letters of support for the campaign from Nelson Mandela and Prime Minister Tony Blair.

The campaign won the prestigious advertising award from Campaign Magazine’s Annual Press Awards in March 2002. It is the second advertising award that has been presented to EMMA.

The campaign beat off quality competition for “Best Financial and Corporate Advertisement” from The Army (Saatchi & Saatchi), Land Rover (Rainey Kelly Campbell Roalfe/Y&R), Scottish National Blood Transfusion Service (Faulds), Volvo (Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO) and The Labour Party (TWBA/London) for their successful general election campaign.

EMMA founder and director Bobby Syed said of winning the award, "We are extremely honoured and excited by this recognition towards EMMAs corporate stance against racism in any shape or form, which ultimately highlights our positive multicultural agenda."

Ajab Singh, art director of Saatchi & Saatchi, said, "We had designed a simple advert with a powerful message that touches all our existence.’Blood', this has become our second award with EMMA, which we are all extremely proud of."

The ethnic minority community in Great Britain – after mass migration in the 1950's and early 1960's – now symbolise the continued bond that presently exists between many global cultures. It also highlights the growing multicultural depth within this country, as a growing generation in the U.K. become British through multicultural developments via music, food, fashion, and an enriched urban life-style.

The anti-racist, blood donor campaign was conceived as a means to rebuild multicultural confidence throughout Britain, which was damaged recently due to race riots taking place in Northern areas of England. The date 14 August, 2001 symbolises the 54th anniversary and day of celebration for the Independence of Pakistan and India from the British colonial rule in 1947.
Beyond promoting multiculturalism, EMMA also founded the EMMA Multicultural Solidarity campaign week by encouraging the British public to register for blood donations, from the 10th to the 14th of September, 2001. The contributions were meant to assist the National Health Services by having the general public participate, allowing human life to thrive regardless of ethnicity.

  “I would like to say to the patrons and people in EMMA that they are doing a wonderful job of cementing solidarity with the people of South Africa. This solidarity has over many years brought the people of Britain and South Africa closer together. I hope that my receipt of this award will in a small way add value to the work that EMMA is doing in promoting cultural diversity and co-operation.”

  Nelson Mandela
Former President of South Africa and EMMA Lifetime Achievement Recipient  
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“Thank you for honouring me the Ethnic Multicultural Media Award for Lifetime Achievement. It is an award I share with all ethnic communities, who have striven to surpass their obstacles and achieve their dreams. As in the United States, Britain is lucky to draw from the talents of a community rich in ethnic diversity. The vital cultural contributions by people of African, Asian, West Indian and Middle Eastern descent are integral to the progress of British culture and business at large.”
  Muhammad Ali
Championship Boxer and EMMA Lifetime Achievement Recipient
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  “As I am sure you know, my predecessor Michael Howard was a strong supporter of EMMA, and I look forward to working with you too.”
  Rt Hon David Cameron
Leader of the Conservative Party in the UK  
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“I would like to say how much I admire all that you have achieved through EMMA to promote positive images of multiculturalism.”  
  Ken Livingstone
Former Mayor of London  
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  “The power of a movement lies in the fact that it can indeed change the habits of people. This change is not the result of force but of dedication, of moral persuasion.”    
  Donald Woods
Anti-Apartheid Activist and EMMA Patron
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