ICON Launches Swiss Foundation Against Anxiety & Depression

The Swiss Foundation Against Anxiety & Depression (SFAD) is committed to raising awareness for mental health related issues in Switzerland. Anxiety, Depression and mental health issues tend to be minimalized in Switzerland. A recent study indicates that fully 60% of individuals suffering from a related mental illness do not receive the correct treatment, in large part because doctors may not be fully informed of the proper medical treatments available for these illnesses.  The foundation, founded by Gabriele Bär-Richner, is committed to raising awareness of mental health issues at large, informing doctors of the latest medical trends, and, most importantly, helping sufferers get the help they need.

The foundation works closely with the Zentrum für Angst- und Depressionsbehandlung Zürich who are the leading medical authorities in Switzerland.  Among the planned activities is the annual symposium in April, 2011 where the latest information in mental health treatments will be presented.  The foundation was introduced this weekend in a profile article in the SonntagsZeitung.

For ICON, we were immediately drawn to the project, in part because of the clear need in Switzerland, where people are hesitant to discuss mental illness openly.  We were asked to develop a brand platform which could support all of the necessary audience.  For SFAD, this includes three main targets: (1) Sufferers, (2) Doctors and (3) Supporters.


As a first step towards bringing this new foundation forward, we looked at the cause and tried to find a symbol which would be at once recognizable, connected to the cause, yet hopeful and positive.  We spent some time with a simple image of a tear, which we then turned upside down into a positive exclamation point.  In the end, we hope the symbol is simple, yet representative of the mission of the foundation.  The strength of the symbol is its’ ability to dynamically adjust for each of the three audiences.  Over time, we are confident in its’ ability to continue to evolve within the planned marketing materials.  The full logo exploration is posted on our blog post: SFAD Logo Exploration

The official launch of the foundation is planned for January, 2011.  Our interim webpage, www.SFAD.ch introduces the logo and foundation, and allows people to “Get Help” via the ZADZ, join the cause or read the press announcement.  The full site launch is in production, and scheduled to launch in January, 2011.