Kirshenbaum Bond Creates PSAs for Lyric

SAN FRANCISCO Kirshenbaum Bond San Francisco has completed a new public service campaign for a local organization that helps gay youth.

The pro bono work for San Francisco’s Lavender Youth Recreation and Information Center, known as Lyric, consists of three radio ads featuring Tales of the City author Armistead Maupin and some small space print ads.

In the first of three 60-second PSAs, “Understanding,” a nervous teen boy admits to his abusive, redneck-sounding parents that he’s gay. “Aw son, I’m proud of ya,” the father says, adding that it took courage to tell him and he is loved because he’s their son, no matter what.

“It’s great; it turns the traditionally expected moment on its head,” said Noel Cottrell, executive creative director and managing partner of KBSF. He said that many teens that turn to Lyric have attempted suicide after imagining the reaction their family would have to their sexual orientation. “Wouldn’t it be great if the whole world listened and understood?” is the message, Cottrell said.

In “School Day,” a teen hears gay insults throughout the day from people like the school bus driver and cafeteria workers until he walks into Lyric, where he is called by his name.

“Harold,” the third spot, features an elderly couple talking about a visit from their entire family. The wife takes a moment to break the news to her husband that, “I’m gay. I’m a lesbian,” after 53 years of marriage. She says she was waiting for the right time to tell Harold. The voiceover, done by Maupin, says, “Don’t wait.”

That spot is meant to be tongue-in-cheek, Cottrell said, but is made to draw attention to a very serious subject.

The ads also advertise the youth talk line and Lyric’s Web site, www.lyric.org, and ask people to donate money to the organization.

Lyric, founded in 1988, is the only San Francisco community center for lesbian, gay, bisexual and questioning youth, ages 12-23. It offers peer-based education, advocacy, recreation, information and leadership services.