Sanlam launches The Memory Collection

A bead necklace. A tiny elephant figurine. An old green jersey. Objects spark memories. They can be a critical connection to someone loved and lost. A way to honour our departed and celebrate their lives. Right now, many of us can’t come together. When it comes to funerals and mourning, this is especially difficult. This prompted the creation of The Memory Collection – a platform brought to you by Sanlam. A space for South Africans to share memories and images of meaningful objects as a tribute to those who are gone, but not forgotten.

Conceptualised by King James, the campaign deals with something extremely tender and difficult head-on. Senior Copywriter at King James, Kate White says, “If people cannot come together to mourn, what do we do? We went through different ways of representing people and realised that memories are often triggered in a joyful way by objects. Like your mom’s glasses or wedding dress. That’s how the visual language came about.”

In the context of the lockdown restrictions, now is the time for us to make new plans and find new ways to honour and celebrate those who have passed. This platform features real stories from people who have lost someone in their lives.

Creative Director Graeme McCree adds, “This is not a platform of obituaries. It is more than that. What you share with someone is not just their CV. It’s those objects that represent the moments that are beautiful and special.”

White adds, “This is an online tribute for people to forever commemorate their departed. It also ties into different ways of mourning from around the world, like walls of remembrance, South Africans coming together as a community, and more. As it is online, it also renders geographical boundaries obsolete. With families spread out all over the world and movement restricted right now, it’s a way to connect. We expect a lot of the memories to come from family members sharing with each other.”

The campaign includes a strong radio component, where experts – like grief counsellors – will lead meaningful conversations in local vernaculars, empowering people to share their memories of loved ones and how they’re experiencing the grieving process right now. These discussions will be centred around the cultural, financial, and emotional implications.

White continues, “Catharsis is very much part of this. This platform is about helping people to heal. Grief can be extremely isolating in normal times. Right now, it’s especially important that we feel connected and supported, especially in the absence of important cultural rituals and celebrations.”

As a leader in the funeral space with a funeral plan that pays out most claims in four hours, Sanlam is well-positioned to speak up sensitively in this space. Jabulile Smith, Marketing Manager at Sanlam Developing Markets Limited, says, “Our aim is to alleviate admin and quickly provide a pay-out so families can focus on what really counts – celebrating the life of their loved one. That’s why we’re proud to bring South Africans this platform. A way for us all to pay tribute to those who are gone, but not forgotten.”

People can share their memories, objects and images to The Memory Collection as pictures, notes or even voice notes. To contribute, visit The Memory Collection site.  

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