WaterAid’s ‘Water Effect’ appeal aimed to get clean water and decent toilets to more than 20 health centres around the world, helping to give children the best start in life. House of Experience was tasked with creating a thought-provoking stunt that inspired the British public to help the campaign raise £1.5 million. Not many people know that 800 children under the age of five die every day from dirty water and poor sanitation, it was time to get people talking and make them aware of something so severe and heartbreaking.
800 schoolbags were placed on the steps of St Paul’s Cathedral as a stark reminder of the number of children who die every day from dirty water, never reaching their first day of school. Each of the Cathedral’s 24 entrance steps represented one hour of the day and displayed 33 bags for the 33 children younger than five who die every hour because they lack access to clean water. Bags on the front row were labelled with the names of real children whose lives were tragically cut short by diarrhoea diseases linked to poor sanitation. The stunt was filmed to create a short piece of content to allow WaterAid to reach an even wider audience. Dougray Scott, an ambassador of WaterAid came down to tell the story behind the stunt, further increasing awareness. Business men and women passing by on their daily commute stopped to find out what was going on. Such a striking stunt meant it was hard for people to miss and difficult for them to walk off without finding out the reason for the schoolbags.
The stunt achieved wide-spread coverage totalling 11 pieces of PR, including Metro, The Telegraph and The Times (with a combined readership of over 2.6 million), whilst the video achieved thousands of views on Facebook.