Mental Health Campaign Gives 2020 a Big Middle Finger

By | December 18, 2020

Count 2020 as the year that pent-up anger hit its threshold. Between the pandemic, quarantines, lockdowns, protests, toilet paper hoarding and a contentious election, everybody was fed up about nearly everything.

Social impact agency Public captured that frustration in a 90-second video, “#EFF2020,” that finds a diverse cast of pissed off people telling 2020 “f**k you” while simultaneously raising their middle fingers in protest, all to raise awareness and funds for mental health and wellbeing.

The profanity-laden sendoff to the year acknowledges all the bad things that went on during the year, with select folks stating their extreme displeasure. A man invites us all to give a big “f**k you” to 2020 and is followed by various people doing just that. A nurse curses the virus, while a couple curses the canceling of their wedding. Others call out their furloughs and job losses, the closing of schools, police violence, murder hornets, Zoom calls, politicians, celebrity deaths, and, of course, Karen.

According to Public CEO Phil Haid, the “#EFF2020” holiday campaign was created to acknowledge that 2020 has been one lousy year.

“So why remind people of it with a holiday campaign? Because despite all the challenges so many of us have endured this past year, there is still room for optimism and joy. And our mental health depends on it. This is why we decided to create a campaign that reflects what many people are feeling and thinking and channel it into a fundraiser for mental health organizations,” he said.

The campaign will benefit The Mental Health Coalition in the US and the Black Health Alliance in Canada. Both organizations take a collaborative, partnership-based approach to achieve results, which is what Public was looking for. 

“Creatively, we aimed to entertain to break through the noise and drive donations for two worthy organizations. We know laughter is the best medicine, so we served up a dose of realism with a sense of humor and a silver lining that things will get better as we head into 2021,” added Haid.

The campaign is part of Public’s ethos as a social change agency, with other recent campaigns including “#HanksForDistancing” (with Tom Hanks, of course) and “Vote for a Party,” incentivizing young people to vote in a municipal election. 

Kyle O’Brien is a freelance writer based in Jim Thorpe, Pa.