Raising the Roof wants you, and your avatar, to wear a toque

The national charity is raising awareness with a new Facebook app and a national campaign.

Raising the Roof is asking Canadians to try on a toque this week, and for the first time, the non-profit is offering virtual toques on Facebook, too.

The new Facebook app and a series of events across the country on Toque Tuesday are leading in to a national ad campaign later this month.

‘It’s such an important way to engage with people across the country and we’re so excited this year we can do some activities on Facebook,’ says Carolann Barr, executive director, Raising the Roof. ‘We’re just thrilled to be partaking in that, especially after redesigning and relaunching our English and French websites.’

The organization has print, TV, radio and OOH PSAs that will start showing up Feb. 21 and will run for six weeks in donated spaces. There is also an online video, available on the website. The campaign’s tagline is, ‘Homeless youth have nothing, but potential.’

The Toronto office of Leo Burnett worked on the creative and Starcom, also in Toronto, is handling the buy. Both worked pro bono.

The goal of the ads, Barr says, is to ‘build awareness and empathy around youth homelessness with the general public.’

Raising the Roof is hoping to get 65,000 people to wear toques or add a toque to their profile picture on Toque Tuesday. Money from the toques being sold at the seven events across Canada goes to grants for homeless-serving agencies.