Charity: water is not only synonymous will a deep and personal commitment to improving the lives of millions of people through access to clean water, but they are also highly respected as one of the most effective social storytellers in both the non-profit and for profit categories. Throughout their community outreach campaigns – from ‘Donating your Birthday’ to ‘WaterForward’ to the ‘September’ campaign– they never lose sight of the need to honestly and authentically capture the humanity of the giving experience for both the donor and recipient. Constantly committed to capturing this humanity in fresh and compelling ways, they have just released a virtual reality film that makes the donor’s experience and fulfillment even more intimate and rewarding.
Launched at their 10th annual charity: ball in NYC this past December, over 400 supporters experienced charity: water first foray into virtual reality (VR). The film documents the experiences of 13-year-old Selam in Ethiopia, revealing an emotionally charged story that shares how her and her family’s lives have changed from the charity: water project that was constructed in her village.
Charity: water’s adoption of VR is the perfect evolution of its ‘show’ vs. ‘tell’ approach to storytelling. As Scott Harrison, Founder of Charity: water explained in an interview, “Our hearts don’t respond to data and statistics, stories have the power to make us feel.”
VR enables the organization to put donors directly in the shoes of beneficiaries to understand both the devastating affects that lack of access to clean and safe water imposes, while showing the immensely positive impacts that happen across a village when access is provided. It also underpins Harrison’s rich photojournalistic philosophy of communication.
With new technologies such as VR, organizations now have the opportunity to create intimacy at-scale for their advocates, donors, customers or consumers through emotive storytelling and rich, authentic experiences.
Sign up here to experience charity: water’s amazing VR story of Selam and the difference that a well made to her entire village. Then please contribute as much as you you can to change the lives of those in need of the gift of clean water.
Feature Image via Flickr courtesy of Maurizio Pesce https://flic.kr/p/rGas7g
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