Community Relations Campaign

Community relations campaign aims to build support for permanent housing for homeless

More than 4,000 Orange County residents pledged support for initiative.

Changing Hearts and Minds About Orange County’s Homeless Population - Logo -

Communities nationwide are struggling to find a solution to homelessness. In Orange County, California, United to End Homelessness (U2EH) engaged the agency Idea Hall to help build support for a proven solution: permanent supportive housing. The resulting campaign has won the top prize in the “Community Relations Campaign” category of the PR Daily Awards.

The agency’s goals were ambitious: 100 million impressions, 3,500 local pledges of support and at least $100,000 in value-add media. Research was vital to the effort, given the need to understand local residents’ perceptions and attitudes toward the proposed solution. Research also included a media landscape assessment and other media insights, journalist interviews, case studies for solving homelessness and more.

The campaign featured public-facing collateral including bus shelter ads, billboards, digital ads, video ads and print ads, along with media outreach (with op-eds supplementing press releases and pitches).

The media program kicked off with an exclusive for the Orange County Register telling the tale of a homeless individual suffering from multiple sclerosis. Idea Hall also implemented a media buying plan that included a 12-page custom magazine-style publication distributed with the Register and the Orange County Business Journal.

The team surpassed its impressions goal by more than 90%, with 191.9 million total impressions. It also exceeded its pledge goal, mobilizing 4,286 community members to pledge their support to the permanent housing solution. Finally, it secured a total of $200,000 in value-add media (for example, two free digital billboards and 208 free bus shelter ads).

Congratulations to Rebecca Hall, Anita Mellon, Kristina Sarenas, Nicole Deermount and Angelyssa Granillo.

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