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CASE STUDY

OPAP Cyprus & Press and Information Office: This Easter

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THE CHALLENGE

The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic is the defining global health crisis of our time. This great challenge the universe is facing has required many changes and adjustments to our daily lives in order to prevent the spread of the disease. Like many countries, the Cyprus government has taken drastic measures in order to quarantine citizens, which included the period of Orthodox Easter. For Orthodox Christians, this is normally a time of reflection and communal mourning followed by joyful release, of centuries-old ceremonies steeped in symbolism and tradition. But this year, Easter has essentially been cancelled. For some people, the restrictions during Easter are particularly tough. Officials fear any slippage in social distancing could have dire consequences, particularly during a holiday that normally sees people cram into churches and flock to the countryside.

THE IDEA

The idea was to remind every Orthodox and Cypriot citizen that this Easter would be different. We wouldn’t be visiting our villages, we wouldn’t barbecue in our back gardens and we wouldn’t be going to church. And most importantly and often painfully, we would not be gathering at the homes of our family and friends. With this campaign, OPAP in cooperation with Press and Information Office shows the public an alternative way to share love. The only way. This Easter, we must show our love by keeping our distance. We will be staying home and spreading solidarity and responsibility, not the virus. So that no one will be missed from the next family gathering. An emotional yet hopeful message linking the current situation the world is facing with the cultural and traditional attributes of the Cypriot consumer.

THE RESULTS

People realized that the true meaning of Easter was to stay home for their people and the community. Closing churches during Easter has been hard but many have turned to the internet and video conference prayers. Cypriots obeyed the rules and stayed isolated during the period of Easter and at the moment Cyprus is reporting very low number of coronavirus cases.

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