What is it?
The campaign includes a short video featuring online make-up artist Lauren Luke, who appears on screen with severe cuts and bruises on her face. Her injuries are fake, but the viewer is led to believe that they have been inflicted on her by an abusive partner. She proceeds to deliver her make-up tutorial, calmly applying foundation to cover up her bruises and giving practical tips on how to minimise the effects of physical violence. The video ends with the statistic that 65 per cent of women who experience domestic violence keep it hidden, followed by the message ‘Don’t cover it up’ and the URL www.refuge.org.uk/lauren, where viewers can access further support and information about domestic violence.
Watch the video:
Why is the charity doing it?
Luke has a huge online following of teenage girls and young women. Research shows that abuse in teenage relationships is alarmingly common, and Refuge believes that much more work needs to be done to reach this group and educate them about domestic violence. A survey carried out by Refuge and YouGov in 2009 revealed that more than half of young women aged 18 to 21 had experienced at least one abusive incident from a boyfriend, husband or partner. Despite this, only 41 per cent said that they would know where to go for help if they experienced domestic violence.
What else is happening in the campaign?
Viewers are encouraged to share the video with friends, text to donate to Refuge and sign a petition that the charity has launched with Red magazine, calling for more life-saving domestic violence services across the country.
Who has created the video?
The campaign has been created by advertising agency BBH and will be hosted on Luke’s YouTube channel.
Third Sector verdict:
The online film takes a brave approach to the issue of domestic violence by encouraging women to talk about the abuse they suffer. The last few seconds of the film are genuinely hair-raising and leave the viewer feeling uncomfortable.