Women's Aid

The domestic violence charity has launched a Valentine's Day campaign to raise funds by selling virtual gifts

A Cabinet of Dreams
A Cabinet of Dreams

What is it?

The charity has set up a display in a rented shop window in Soho in central London and called it Cabinet of Dreams. The display features artwork encased in bell-jars, designed by several London artists, including Kyle Bean and Suck & Chew. Passers-by can text a code-word to a number and will receive an image of one of the pieces of art, which they can then forward to their loved one as a gift for Valentine’s Day. Names of the artwork include A Stolen Moment, Your Heart's Desire and Moon on a Stick. Shoppers can also opt to donate between £2 and £20 for the charity at the same time.

A comfortable silenceAnything else?

For those who won't see the shop display, the bell-jars can be viewed at an online store, and people can use the site to send pictures of the artwork  to their partners. 

Why is the charity doing it?

Women's Aid launched the campaign to raise awareness of the one in four women who suffer domestic abuse at some point in their lives. The charity carried out a survey to find out what really matters to women on Valentine’s Day, and found that only one in five women wants to receive roses or a romantic gesture.

Nicola Harwin, chief executive of Women's Aid, said: "Many people do not realise that abusive relationships usually do not begin with violence, but often with gifts and flowers - all of the things we associate with romance.

"Women’s Aid believes that love and relationships should be based on equality and respect, and would like to encourage everyone to celebrate this Valentine's Day by buying a 'money-can't-buy' gift for their partner from our virtual shop, which will help to raise vital funds for our lifesaving services."

A portion of spoilt rottenHow is the campaign being promoted?

The charity is promoting the campaign on its Twitter feed.

Third Sector verdict:

The campaign is a simple combination of old-fashioned romance and new technology. The attractive and eye-catching shop display will turn the heads of passers-by, while the pretty images could prove a popular alternative to a traditional Valentine's Day card. By adding the donation element, the charity is both spreading its message about the prevalance of domentic violence in the UK and raising funds to continue its work.

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