Oxfam has been around since 1942. And yet as a person who tries to keep up with non-profit organizations, I had only experienced Oxfam for the first time last year around holidays. I saw their many of their posters represented all over the mall. It had a picture an awkward goat or alpaca just standing there and the words said “Oxfam Collection”. At first I thought these were high end stuffed animals to buy for a holiday gift. This was marketing scheme for Oxfam America Unwrapped site, where the purpose was to buy sustainable goods for a village who could use them. The whole advertising campaign and idea was amazing and funny. It really caught my attention.
I am not here to talk about Oxfam America’s Unwrapped advertising campaign, but to rather talk about Oxfam International’s logo and branding. This logo shows who Oxfam International is how they go about it.
Oxfam was originally founded in Oxford in 1942 as the Oxford Committee for Famine Relief. It was one of several local committees formed in support of the National Famine Relief Committee. Their mission was to persuade the British government to allow food relief through the Allied blockade for the starving citizens of Axis-occupied Greece. The first overseas Oxfam was founded in Canada in 1963. The organization changed its name to OXFAM in 1965. Since then it has grown. Now Oxfam is an international confederation of 15 organizations working in 98 countries worldwide to find lasting solutions to poverty and injustice.1
With so many branches Oxfam needed to find a way to unify each branch, and to do so they found a way by rebranding themselves. A branding is how some one percieves a company or organization in a recognizable way; which is usually associated with a name, symbol or logo. Oxfam decided to do this with their logo to convey all around the world what their organization does. The logo uses great symbolism and obvious references to do so.
The most obvious reference to the logo is how it is broken into an O and an X together representing the OX of Oxfam. Other imagery also shown is a person’s head or a person who arms spread trying to cause a unification. A ribbon can also be seen, which usually represents a cause of some sort. There is also the circle that represents a wholeness, oneness or even the whole world.
These are all traits that oxfam are trying to convey. How one person can be a unifying force for a cause.
The color green is also being implemented to represent the modern green movement and it also represents a soft approach. There is a sense of boldness and firmness with the strong thickness of the text and line width of the logo.
Oxfam’s advertising and branding can really make anyone not forget who they are. And this is very important for a non profit organization, as being forgotten also makes the cause be forgotten. So check out Oxfam International and their cause. I will guarantee you they will stick in your head for time to come.