Our Work

The Shared Network

Folk Wunderman Thompson WORK The Shared Network

The world’s first mobile network, created for the homeless.

Challenge

After the rebrand of An Post masterbrand, An Post Mobile needed to revaluate its purpose and position within the business portfolio. With restrictive budgets and uncertainty over its future, An Post Mobile needed to do something, or create something, which would help live up to the brand purpose of “improving the lives of people, now and for generations to come”, whilst portraying itself as a relevant brand to its target audience.

Inspiration

In 2019, the homelessness epidemic in Ireland was highlighted when the numbers in temporary accommodation or living on the streets topped 10,000 for the first time in the country’s history. And although many of those without a home have smartphones, few can afford data. This means they often don’t have access to reliable online communications, leaving them disconnected from information and isolated from friends and family. In an age where information is power and connectivity is key to everyday life, those who can't access this privilege are left behind.

Idea

Many of us have more data than we can use each month and take for granted just how valuable unused data can be for those that need it. With our partners at An Post, we developed The Shared Network – the first mobile initiative created specifically to reconnect Ireland’s homeless community. The service empowers the people of Ireland to donate data they don’t need to those who need it most and help Ireland’s homeless community get back on their feet.

Growth

Within two months from launch, 30% of Ireland's homeless population had access to The Shared Network. Users of The Shared Network spoke about how access to data gave them greater confidence by having online access, as well as how vital it was for them to be able to stay in contact with family and friends. Access to online data allowed users to apply for online courses and helped people find a home of their own.

Folk Wunderman Thompson WORK The Shared Network

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