What's In A Name: Possible"s 'Homeless Not Nameless" Initiative

For the first time, Possible's internship program is introducing a project viewable outside of the agency walls. Past intern projects have culminated in a client presentation or a competition evaluated by senior leaders in the organization.

This summer, 11 interns at the Seattle-based agency teamed up with local non-profit Facing Homelessness to develop creative under the "Homeless Not Nameless" initiative. 

Like other cities, in Seattle homelessness is often viewed as ‘not my problem.’ There is no shared ownership of the homelessness issue. The interns wanted to change that by focusing on the relationship between homeless people and others by the simple power of knowiing someone’s name, says Daniel Carlson, SVP strategy, Possible.

"The interns were given a question 'How could a name break down the wall that divides the sheltered and unsheltered?'" he says.

As part of their program, interns conducted research, developed a creative brief, creative concepts and then organized and produced a video. This video shows community residents and homeless individuals playing a Jenga game where each block features thought-provoking questions, such as when did they last cry. The clip suggests you break down invisible barriers when you know someone's name.

Then the interns worked with agency mentors to develop a content strategy and marketing plan along with a logo and collateral materials like buttons and stickers. The agency is also partnering with local influencers, local business and local organizations to generate earned media for the video. 



"We want to start a conversation, get Seattleites to see that a simple action of learning someone’s name could turn the unsheltered into neighbors, members of the community," says Carlson.

In addition, the agency hosted a hack-a-thon for The Block Project, a Seattle non-profit that provides housing solutions for the homeless. The objective of the hack-a-thon was to create a piece of technology for people to use who are interested in becoming more familiar with or participating in The Block Project. These items developed at the hack-a-thon are being presented this week to The Block Project to hopefully be integrated into the initiative.


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