The U.S. Forest Service and Ad Council are partnering for an ad campaign to encourage Hispanic families to explore the great outdoors.
The multimedia effort will be supported by a Spanish-language version of the “Discover the Forest,” (“Descubre el Bosque” in Spanish,) website and Facebook page.
Both platforms include interactive games, a list of activity ideas and a convenient forest locator, powered by NatureFind and GoogleMaps, which allows users to find the closest forest or park to them.
The aim of the nationwide campaign is to increase Hispanic visits to the nation's forests and grasslands, as well as to help them develop a love of nature and an understanding of their role in protecting it.
The Spanish-language public service ads target parents and guardians of tweens (children ages 8-12) and feature TV, radio and outdoor material that showcase how nature can provide the ultimate escape from the stress of our daily lives.
The ads were produced pro bono by Totality, the multicultural arm of Havas.
Creative focuses on three Latino families, each of whom strives to balance schoolwork, jobs and family time, the ads reinforce that these forested destinations are ideal sites for family enjoyment and are often much closer than people perceive.
Latinos make up 23% of those under age 18 in the United States yet only 5.8% of youth who participate in outdoor recreation are Hispanic, according to The Outdoor Foundation report. This is of concern because time in nature brings many physical, emotional and mental benefits to children.
Children spend less time outdoors due to an increase in the number of working parents and the development of new technologies that capture free time indoors. As a result of this limited interaction with the outdoors, many families are unaware of the benefits that nature provides children, including improving their physical and mental health and emotional well-being.
Research shows that children who play outside have lower stress levels and more active imaginations, become fitter and leaner, develop stronger immune systems and have greater respect for themselves and for others.
The Ad Council has partnered with the U.S. Forest Service since 2009 on the “Discover the Forest” campaign encouraging families to unplug and reconnect by getting outdoors and enjoying the wonders of nature. This is the first year the campaign has produced Spanish-language PSA materials.