Disney joins Change4Life for kids exercise push

Health chiefs are hoping the “unique bond” kids have with Mickey Mouse and Monsters Inc’s Sully will encourage them to do more exercise after signing a deal to use Disney’s portfolio of characters in a multimedia campaign. 

mickey mouse
Disney characters such as Mickey Mouse will feature alongside Change4life family in ads to encourage kids to exercise.

Public Health England (PHE) is launch a TV, print, online, experiential and social media campaign featuring Disney characters as part of its long-running anti-obesity drive Change4Life next month.

The purpose of the push is to encourage kids to get as close to the 60 minutes of exercise per day recommended by PHE during the summer holidays. Ads will suggest ways the target can be achieved in 10-minute bursts.

The campaign, which begins 15 July, will see Disney characters alongside the Aardman Animations created ‘Change4life family’ used in M&C Saatchi created ads since the initiative launched in 2009.

Sheila Mitchell, marketing director of Public Health England and one of Marketing Week’s Vision 100, says:

“This partnership with Disney is really exciting. Evidence shows that children have a unique bond with Disney as a brand, their stories and its characters. By utilising this already established connection we aim to drive our keeping active messages amongst children and families, helping Public Health England to push forward with the goal of helping more families to eat well, move more and live longer.”

PHE did not pay anything for use of Disney assets, according to a spokeswoman. Media was bought by both and Disney will run ads on its own channels. 

Disney is the latest brand to partner with PHE for Change4Life activity. In a bid to share some of the cost of public health campaigns with brands, Change4Life has previously ran initiatives with Unilever, Asda and Pepsi.

The ‘10 Minute Shake Up’ partnership with PHE is in line with Disney’s global CSR ‘live healthier’ initiative that includes a commitment to prohibit junk food advertising on its media platforms by the end of 2015.