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Fundraising videos awarded for avoiding use of stereotypes and simple solutions

Last updated: 20.11.2015 // Tuesday this week, several NGOs were praised for using creativity and creating engagement in fundraising videos. White Helmets in Syria won the Golden Radiator Award for being true to their issue. Others had the unpleasant honour of receiving the Rusty Radiator Award, which is awarded fundraising videos that use stereotypes and offer simple solutions.

The Rusty Radiator Award is an initiative that seeks to challenge the single story about development aid. The key goal of the initiative is to “educate ourselves on how stereotypes and simple solutions to complex problems are more damaging, than helping.” The name comes from a 2012 video called “Africa for Norway” (see video on the left on this website), where Africa ships radiators to Norway to save Norwegians from the cold. While the Rusty Radiator criticizes videos that build on stereotypes and offer simple solutions, the Golden Radiator praises fundraising videos that use creativity and create engagement.

This year, the winner was White Helmets in Syria, with a video about Syrian Khaled Farah who volunteers as a rescue worker in bombed-out areas of his country. A jury said: “Many organizations put their donor audience as number one priority. However, through this ad, they are trying to be more true to their issue, rather than to their audience and possible donors.” See the winning video and other nominated videos on their website. Here you also find the winner of the Rusty Radiator Award—BandAid30—and other nominees.

Before the Rusty Radiator Award Ceremony took place in Oslo, Norway, Communications Director in Norad Eva Bratholm took part in the #RadiatorConference. There, Bratholm discussed stereotypes in communication in development aid together with academics, representatives from NGOs, journalists, and others.

The Rusty Radiator Award was created two years ago by Norwegian Students’ and Academics’ International Assistance Fund (Studentenes og Akademikernes Internasjonale Hjelpefond in Norwegian).

You can also read more about the awards in this article by GlobalCitizen.org and in this article by Bistandsaktuelt (article in Norwegian).

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