Billed as the “creative accelerator” of Wieden+Kennedy’s Amsterdam outpost, The Kennedys is a talent-incubating scheme which sees the mega-agency inviting outsiders through its doors to work on what W+K refer to as “kick ass campaigns” that usually highlight socially-minded projects that want to make the world a better place.
Today sees the latest blast from The Kennedys furnace: a big, splashy, great-looking campaign which heralds the arrival of Klabu, an Amsterdam-based non profit who plan on using sport to rebuild the lives of young refugees. Klabu – which is Swahili for “club” – estimates that global refugee figures are at their highest since the end of world war two, and that half of the 25.4 million people currently officially recognised as refugees are under the age of 18.
Founder Jan van Hövell wanted to do something to alleviate the boredom many of these youngsters interred at refugee camps faced day to day. Sport was one solution. And so he headed to Kenya to see what could be done.
In January of this year, he founded the first Klabu club in Kalobeyei, and it now provides facilities, sports equipment and clothing through an “innovative library system.” To keep things ticking over, Jan has worked with The Kennedys to launch a range of fund-raising garments. “The design of the home and away sports shirts, shorts and socks symbolises key elements of African craft, and the contemporary look of the shirt allows it to double up as a unique streetwear piece,” says a Wieden+Kennedy representative.
W+K also tell us that “the campaign includes a 30-page print booklet, a series of campaign films and portraits of refugees and locals living in Kalobeyei, captured by photographer and ex-Kennedy Coco Olakunle.”
Have a peek at a selection of Coco’s incredible imagery below; the documentary above will give you a little more insight into the Klabu ethos and aims.