Press releases - Central Africa - DR Congo - Music - Women
Unison Agency Announces New Brand Identity and Website for Raise Hope for Congo Music Compilation

Unison Agency is pleased to present the newly designed brand identity and website - - for the Raise Hope for Congo album, a special compilation featuring exclusive tracks from renowned artists Norah Jones, Mos Def, Sheryl Crow, Angelique Kidjo, as well as many others, in an effort to raise hope, educate and empower individuals to be a part of the solution to the Congolese conflict.

Responsible for all of the album’s design and branding elements, Unison’s creative team developed the website, CD digital release, Digipak and print booklets, downloadable graffiti stencil as well as the design for all of the project merchandise, including limited-edition t-shirts, posters and art prints. The graffiti stencil was designed for easy dissemination and can serve as the future icon for the struggle to stop violence against women and girls in the country.

"One of our key founding principles is to serve as a catalyst for positive global change by bridging the increasingly wide communications divide between the developed and developing worlds — between the West and seemingly disparate and conflicting cultures of the third world," said Julius Talvik, creative director and co-founder of Unison Agency. "Leveraging our creative forces by using the latest information technology and interactive platforms allows us to not only serve the critical needs of clients working on hard-pressed humanitarian issues, but gives us a platform as entrepreneurs to contribute to the greater good and service a broader, global unmet need."

Inspiration for the design came from a portrait of an anonymous Congolese woman, a ribbon and a color palette derived from Congolese folklore — married to a stylized and roughly stitched quilt. The idea was to give identity and physical form to the countless nameless Congolese women and girls whose destinies remain interwoven and who have endured enormous physical and emotional suffering as a result of the conflict — while at the same time preserving their anonymity. The hand-drawn type that forms the project logotype is directly inspired by hand-painted signs commonly found in Africa.

"We couldn’t have asked for a more gifted design partner on this initiative," said John Prendergast, co-founder of Enough, a project of the Center for American Progress. "Unison’s creative expertise and keen design instincts helped bring to life issues that are distant and difficult for many to grasp. They are true leaders in the branding and cause-marketing field."

The idea for the compilation CD was conceived by Shahin Shahida — Unison Agency consultant and the executive producer of the album — after reading Not on Our Watch, a book by John Prendergast. Shahida saw the critical need for a compilation to help open the world’s eyes to the crisis. His vision was shared with Zeid Masri, founder of Silverhaze and an investor in Downtown Records, who helped set the wheels in motion to produce and make the idea a reality.

"This campaign is a perfect testament to the power of grassroots efforts, particularly when artists and activists unite," said Shahin Shahida.

In the Congo, rape is used as a weapon of war to perpetrate the deadliest conflict since World War II. For many, the situation in Congo is too bleak, or too distant, to approach. The Enough Project and Mercer Street Records (a signature label of Downtown Music), along with Unison, are seeking to change that attitude with the compilation album "Raise Hope for Congo."

Visit to download the music and donate. All profits from the album will help fund critical research and efforts to raise awareness to end the conflict in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.


For nearly a decade, Unison has partnered with foundations, associations, multi-laterals, sovereign governments and non-governmental agencies as well as socially conscious companies to develop and enhance brands as a means to communicate real and lasting change in the world. Unison is dedicated to helping clients champion their causes and continue their lifelong work as activists through sustainable design, brand equity and interactive cause marketing initiatives. Unison’s clients include the Global Fund Against AIDS, TB and Malaria, Friends of the Global Fight, United Nations, Enough Project at The Center for American Progress, Ocean Conservancy, The Endeavor Group, U.S.-U.A.E. Business Council, U.S. Green Building Council, The German Marshall Fund of the U.S. and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Unison has also served clients in the Financial Services, Retail, Manufacturing, Real Estate, Publishing, Pharmaceutical, High Fashion, Entertainment and Media, and Consumer and Beauty sectors.

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