Why donate your stereotypes?

We're messing with you. There's no such thing as charity actors. But in our video, did you recognize stereotypes frequently used in fundraising campaigns?

Hunger and poverty is ugly, and it calls for action. However, we need to create engagement built on knowledge, not stereotypes.

Do you remember the first time you heard about people starving? That initial feeling of shock, and then after having seen the same pictures on TV over and over again, it turned into little drops of apathy.

Stereotypical imagery is hurting both the cause and the people being portrayed. It's taking away people's dignity and agency, while creating apathy instead of action amongst people in the rest of the world.

We like aid. It often works. Still, aid in itself is not enough, and fundraising campaigns rarely reflect upon this. Fundraising ads give you the impression that a few cents is all that is needed. This simplifies the issue of poverty. At the same time it distracts attention away from how western countries policies can have a negative impact.

We need to change the way fundraising campaigns are communicating issues of poverty and development. This is why we are awarding creative fundraising campaigns with the Golden Radiator Award, and stereotypical campaigns with the Rusty Radiator Award. An international jury nominated eight videos, and YOU get to decide the winners by VOTING NOW! Winners will be announced 10th of December.

This is how fundraising campaigns can become better:

  • Let people tell their own stories.
  • Tear down stereotypes, concentrate more on what makes us equal, rather than our differences. See for instance Mama Hope's Women of Nyamonge and African Man videos.
  • Remember it's not about what you think people should want or have or do. If you wish to help someone it should be based on their wishes and needs. A great spoof on this is Tim's revolutionary new one-to-one campaign to Blend out Poverty.
  • Be creative! For instance by using humor, people are triggered to think for themselves and motivated to act, without us having to tell them to. Campaigns like Radi-Aid: Africa for Norway and What has aid ever done for anyone? have received massive attention and got people talking. 
  • Don’t focus too much on the single story. With this we mean that too often fundraising campaigns tell the story of one nameless individual's person sad story. What we want to see is more information about why poverty exists, and what is our role in it? See for instance Glen, Gary and Ross - a film about land grab and the great spoof Drive Aid.

Checklist : lindaraftree.com/category/poverty-porn