Stop the Stigma

"Bruises and broken bones heal. But words stick with you for a long, long while."

Opportunity Nottingham exist to improve the lives of people with multiple and complex needs.

Homelessness, substance misuse and mental ill health are what many beneficiaries of Opportunity Nottingham have experienced in their lives, and so is stigma. We were approached by the organisation to help raise awareness of how stigma affects people with multiple and complex needs.


Art Direction Video Production Strategy

The Finished Result


Behind the Scenes

Due to the complex nature of this campaign, it was vital that we conducted our approach with sensitivity and due diligence. Some of the people we filmed lost confidence and requested to be removed from the edit after they spoke to us, which from our point of view was a real shame, but we understood why they made that decision. Their request to be cut from the film reinforced our understanding of just how deeply stigma plays a part in their lives.

We learned that people experiencing multiple and complex needs often feel as if they don't deserve help. They've been let down by services, and ignored by society. This was a major influence in our artistic approach. We decided to film our talent against a solid black backdrop and modulate our lighting to bring them forward and highlight the contours of their face. We graded the footage in a monochrome palette to reflect the 'black and white' candour of the people we listen to.

They shared their story straight to camera; no script. No closed questions or heavy handed direction. Just a direct engagement with the people and words that matter.

The outcome was powerful, genuine and humbling. We owe a huge thank you to the people who contributed to this film, for their courage, their honesty and their dedication to helping others with multiple and complex needs.

"Reel Media always go above and beyond to get the job done. Their ability to respond to a brief and really portray the subject matter, is truly excellent. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them!"

Stacey Murton

Communications Lead, Opportunity Nottingham