A "Rare" Approach: Soap Operas for the Planet
When it comes to "out of the box" environmental communication, the organization Rare takes the cake. Understanding that the usual brochure/advertising/direct mail strategies for environmental outreach will fall flat with their audience - people living on the small islands of the Caribbean and the Western Pacific - they turned to a media form popular among islanders: radio drama. Since 1996, Rare has been harnessing the power of storytelling on behalf of conservation through its radio soap opera program – using compelling characters and spicy storylines to motivate behavior change and increased awareness on everything from reproductive health to protection of natural resources. Recently, Rare teamed up with the cast and crew of the popular US daytime soap As The World Turns to coach local actors and actresses who star in a soap opera series produced by the organization. On October 25, Rare will host "Rare Affair," a benefit for the program featuring celebrity guests such as Emmy Award-winning journalist Charlie Rose, Nobel Laureate Derek Walcott, and cast and crew from As The World Turns.