Jaime Gill is a freelance communications consultant in Cambodia, splitting his time between paid work with UN agencies, using communications to respond to COVID-19, and pro-bono support to small non-profits struggling to survive the crisis.
In the last twelve months, Jaime has worked on Cambodia’s national COVID-19 vaccine communications program, invented a new safety-promoting sport, ‘Social Distance Football’, and helped a struggling arts non-profit survive by breaking a world record. The unifying factor? All were fueled by hard-hitting media coverage, his favorite method for creating a big impact with small budgets.
It’s all a long way from his first admin job, gluing photo slides onto press releases in a London PR agency in 1998. Along the way, Jaime has worked across most PR roles, becoming Head of Creativity in that PR agency, then moving in-house as Press & Public Affairs Manager for a large disability charity. He launched media campaigns that doubled the numbers of disabled people voting in the UK and created the world’s first ‘easy-read’ newspaper for people with learning disabilities, before moving to Cambodia where he’s spent six years advising commercial and non-profit clients.
Past clients include Microsoft, UNICEF, the BBC, the Olympics, Coca-Cola, Unilever, Fujitsu, UN, and Yahoo.
Jaime began 2019 working at non-profit TLC, developing its first campaigns. In November 2019, “Be An Honourable Warrior” confronted the 30% of Cambodian men who admit to using violence against women. The use of influencers and PR techniques led to a public reckoning across social media and national newspapers. TLC campaigns won nine international awards in 2019 and 2020, but most importantly led to 13,000 women learning domestic violence laws and 25,000 men pledging to end violence.
Despite these successes, Jaime took the difficult decision to leave his secure job in early 2020, knowing he’d mentored two talented young Cambodians and left behind a campaigning blueprint TLC could replicate.
Freelancing allowed Jaime to support organizations at the COVID-19 coalface. He rapidly established paid consultancies with overseas clients including Microsoft enabled him to work pro-bono for independent non-profits unable to pay. In May 2020, he invented ‘Social Distance Football’ with ISF Cambodia. This safety-promoting game was learned by 50,000 young Cambodians online and generated media coverage across four continents, as well as a Platinum Hermes Creative Award.
He also worked with arts/education non-profit, Phare. Having lost 60% of its income when public circus performances were canceled, it faced closure. Jaime proposed a Guinness World Record attempt for the longest circus show to generate media hype and drive people to online fundraisers. The 24-hour show in March 2021 doubled its fundraising target, was viewed by 450,000 online, and generated massive media attention in Cambodia and overseas, winning Gold at the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards.
Jaime’s track record is strong, but he rose to the COVID-19 challenge with the best work of his career. Having fallen in love with Cambodia and worked with several non-profits educating the disadvantaged, he was distressed when school closures began erasing those gains. He wanted to help reduce the damage and declined British Embassy advice to return home.
He immediately offered pro-bono support to education non-profits he knew were effective but struggling. From being a communications manager, he frequently found himself acting as entire communications team - proposing strategy, developing creative ideas, and writing and selling-in press releases.
This work led to UNICEF’s offer to consult on their campaign to re-open schools safely, which led to other COVID-related communications for the UN. As well as campaigns, he wrote and placed a series of thought-leadership articles in national newspapers, championing creativity, education, and children’s needs during/after COVID.
Between January 2019 and now, he created four award-winning communications campaigns with four different organizations, something no other communicator in Cambodia can claim:
- Led hard-hitting, media-driven anti-violence campaign (TLC)
- Collaborated on multimedia storytelling campaign (UNICEF)
- Invented and publicized new safety-promoting sport (ISF)
- Created record-breaking events driven by PR buzz (Phare).
Over six years, Jaime has developed a network of young Cambodian photographers, filmmakers, influencers, activists, journalists and communicators he collaborates with on projects. The awards won have put Cambodia and these remarkable individuals on the global map for creative communications, something which can only help the country’s creative industries in the challenging years ahead.
Since Jaime entered The 2021 International Business Awards®, he continued working as part of a large team of Government ministries and development agencies on the roll-out of COVID-19 vaccines in Cambodia, as a consultant with UNICEF. He provides advice on how to combat misinformation and increase demand for vaccines - Cambodia is now one of the most vaccinated countries in the whole of the Asian region.
He also worked on the successful launch of Generation Future, a new program to find ten talented young Cambodians with ideas on how to change the world. UNICEF will match them with mentors and financial support to turn their dreams into realities.
He assisted with an artistic collaboration between UNICEF and Phare, celebrating the resilience of Cambodian families during the pandemic. This has become a viral hit on social media.
Jaime won the Silver Stevie Awards in 2021 for Communications Professional of the Year. Interested in Communications Awards for 2022?