It’s amazing to reflect on the fact that, as far as I know, this campaign has yet to be written about on paper. That is until today when an article by Facebook Group member, Matías Infante, appeared in El Mercurio, a leading national daily newspaper in Chile. For spanish readers the full article is here. Below is a rough translation.
ColaLife: the social network that was born in Facebook and sensitized Coca-Cola
“One of the pleasures in life is knowing you can take a Coca-Cola even if you’re in the middle of the bush,” says Simon Berry from London. The Englishman knows what he is talking about: in 1988 his government was working for a humanitarian aid programme in northern Zambia, on the African continent. In the area, one in five children dies before reaching 5 years. The reason? Dehydration from diarrhea, from the intake of untreated water.
In contrast, in Zambia you can drink Coca-Cola when and where you want. He realized that no matter what part of the world were, the distribution network reached everywhere, “distribution channels are completely amazing … even in the poorest countries”.
This is whwere an idea occurred to prevent needless deaths emerged: “Coca-Cola could use this tremendous distribution power to bring the people of those countries rehydration salts and materials to teach them about hygiene and water treatment.” The initiative named as the ColaLife started.
That was 20 years ago. He began sending letters to the authorities already known, but nothing major happened. 7,305 days passed since then, until Berry created a group on Facebook. And the viral effect did the rest. Today ColaLife is a social network that puts pressure on the transnational. They intend that, for every 10 crates of Coca-Cola, one of the receptacles are distributed medicines and water filters individual. Everything in order to reduce the mortality of children in the developing countries.
The Facebook group, called “Let’s talk to Coca-Cola about saving the World’s Children” is exploding like a gas drink. And Coca-Cola heard: Berry has met with leading executives in the company and the idea is ColaLife reality later this year in Tanzania. All this in just over three months of life on the Internet; viralización an example of power and online.
He realized medicines did not arrive everywhere, but Coca-Cola did. And he linked the two and use that distribution power.