Gabey Goh
Apr 12, 2016

Hong Kong exhibit targets gender-selective abortion

HONG KONG - An NGO campaign by Grey Group Hong Kong seeks to raise awareness around the ongoing practice of sex-selective abortion.

Hong Kong exhibit targets gender-selective abortion

Client: Joy of Life, a Hong Kong NGO

Agency: Grey Group Hong Kong

Market: Hong Kong

Scope: Gallery exhibit, outdoor, online

Details: In some countries, a strong preference for sons over daughters still drives the practice of gendercide. A campaign centred on a photo exhibition in Hong Kong aims to raise awareness about the issue. 

The 'First Photo Last Photo’ exhibition, by Grey Group and NGO Joy of Life, features ultrasound images of girl foetuses.

Sex-selective abortion is illegal in Hong Kong, but according to the agency and NGO, "many have found ways around the law, thus creating a plight where an ultrasound scan of an unborn girl becomes her death sentence".

In addition to the exhibit, the campaign also includes features in print magazines, an online galllery and outdoor placements on bus shelters and outside one of the city’s largest abortion clinics.


Kevin Lai, chairman, Joy of Life:

Is it a joyous moment or a death sentence? There are cultures that still favour sons over daughters, but we trust that together with Grey Group Hong Kong, these powerful photos can be a starting point for the birth of change.

Keith Ho, managing partner and chief creative officer, Grey Group Hong Kong:

Females are perceived as a liability as they are no longer considered part of the family once married. And so because of their gender, they are victims to the sex-selection abortion. We care and believe we have the power to make a difference to help prevent this. The photos aim to capture the impact one can have on a life with the choice they make.

Campaign Asia-Pacific’s view:

This is a heartbreaking practice that still lingers thanks to the entrenched grip of cultural traditions, especially in Asia. We would hope that this campaign manages to move the needle, even if just a little, although that will require an outreach strategy that gets to the audience that actually needs convincing.

From a creative standpoint, it is definitely strong work. The use of ultrasound images of female foetuses, paired with the equally blunt tagline of “first photo last photo” is a simple but clear way to deliver the message. It might be a little too brusque for some, but given the issue at hand, perhaps that is called for.



Agency: Grey Hong Kong & Shanghai
Deputy worldwide chief creative officer: Per Pedersen
Managing director & chief creative officer, HK: Keith Ho
Managing director, SH: June Lyloc
Executive creative director: Attlee Ku
Creative director: Eric Hong, Christopher Lee
Creative: Jackie Wong, Jeffrey MC Wong, Jeffrey Wong, Ritta Deng, Jesse Lee, Keith Lam, Jonathan Lim.
Account service: Matt Wong
Web developer: Hocti Ho
Production house: Breathe Pictures Ltd. 


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