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An Post - Address Point

Industry: Professional & Public services
Style: Minimalism

An Post, Ireland’s national postal service exists to improve the quality of life for people in Ireland, expressed through its brand platform, 'For Your World'. To do this responsibly, the brand takes a wide eye view of the challenges Irish people face and identifies where it can make the most impact.

One such challenge is Ireland’s homelessness crisis. Ireland is home to one of Europe’s fastest growing housing crises with Ireland’s capital ranked the worst city in the world to find affordable accommodation, leading to extreme poverty and social discrimination.

An Post saw that addressing this issue was an opportunity to live up to its purpose while advancing one of the UN’s goals, Goal 1 – End poverty, in all its forms, everywhere by improving access to basic services and helping people out of poverty.

• Brief
Develop a solution that acts as a proof point for An Post’s purpose and furthers Ireland’s 2018-2020 Sustainable Development Goals in line with the UN 2030 agenda.

• Objectives
Provide a platform that stands to break the cycle of homelessness and help people out of poverty by leveraging An Post’s physical and digital nationwide infrastructure to improve access to basic services.

Describe the cultural/social/political/environmental climate in your region and the significance of your campaign within this context

One of the fastest growing challenges Irish people face today is the country’s housing crisis. In the decade since the Global Financial Crisis, Ireland has had a crippling lack of investment in affordable housing. Meaning that today, Ireland is a first world country with a third world housing problem.

Aside from crippling rent and housing prices, the number of citizens in emergency accommodation has more than doubled in three years, from around 4,350 persons in 2015 to 9,900 in 2018. In March of 2019, for the first time in Irish history it reached over 10,000 people. Of particular concern is that this homeless population includes children, whose number has more than tripled from 1,211 to 3,824.

Local authorities have a backlog of almost 72,000 households on the June 2018 social housing waiting list. The average waiting time for permanent housing is four years. The societal and cultural implications of homelessness as a result of having no fixed address include access to health services, employment, reliable correspondence with government bodies and education for members of the homeless community as well as severe de-humanisation and stigma, all of which keep individuals in poverty and limit the opportunities to escape.

Describe the creative idea (30% of vote)

The cruel irony of homelessness is that to get help, you need an address. As a brand committed to improving the quality of life for all of the people of Ireland, An Post sought to find a way to provide homeless people with an address. While we cannot fix the issue of adequate housing, we believed that we could improve access to essential services and create an infrastructure that stood to break the cycle of homelessness, helping people out of poverty.

With an address, we are giving people an anchor that helps them out of poverty by providing reliable correspondence methods and improve access to:

• Health services
• Housing
• Education
• Potential employment

Describe the strategy (20% of vote)

To understand how best to execute this solution, we hosted research groups with members of the homeless community to understand their daily challenges.
We established it needed to be:

• Flexible – To reflect the nomadic nature of life as someone who is homeless.
• Free – To leave no one behind, this service needed to incur zero cost to the user.
• Human – It needs to feel like a real address and not a P.O Box to reduce stigma and not be known as ‘the homeless address’.
• A clean and simple UX journey – The experience of signing up needed to be a two-step process using simple language and minimal data commitment.

A secondary consideration was also creating a blueprint that could be easily adopted by other postal services around the world to provide this solution in other countries facing this issue.

Describe the execution (20% of vote)

Address Point is a free nationwide service that provides a fixed address to those without a fixed home. It enables them to access essential services by creating a fixed proxy address at a local post office where they can collect their post at a time and place convenient to them. All users need to collect post is some photo id. If they move to a different part of the country, they can generate a new address for their new area of temporary residence.

Address Point is accessible via the internet and is a simple two step journey requiring only a name and preferred location to be submitted. An address is then generated which can be saved as a photo or written down manually. It borrows the post office’s physical address and includes a unique identifier that notifies the post master to hold the post at the post office for collection.

Describe the results/impact (30% of vote)

Response from all support services and the homeless community has indicated that this will be an essential and vital lifeline for helping people out of poverty and reducing social discrimination.

“It will make a big difference in terms of the homeless community’s ability to survive while homeless and also their ability to get out of homelessness. It finally gives them an anchor.” – Director of Advocacy, Focus Ireland

Address Point was endorsed by every national homeless service in Ireland, calling it a practical and pragmatic solution at a time of national crisis and extreme poverty.

The launch generated national and international press, earning 220 million media impressions and was covered across prime time news on our national TV and radio broadcaster, RTE.

An Post has been consulting with a number of postal networks around the world, sharing this blueprint solution and helping them provide a similar service in their country.
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2019
Bronze Sustainable Development Goals
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2019
Shortlist Brand Experience & Activation
Launch / Re-launch
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2019
Shortlist Sustainable Development Goals
Sustainable Cities and Communities
Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity 2019
Shortlist Sustainable Development Goals
Reduced Inequalities
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