Campaign India Team
May 09, 2024

Interactive Avenues and Chhanv Foundation join forces to empower acid attack survivors

The campaign leverages a social media viral trend to raise awareness and funds for the 'Sheroes Hangout Cafe'.

Interactive Avenues, the digital arm of IPG Mediabrands India, and Chhanv Foundation, a non-profit organisation, have joined forces to support acid attack survivors. 

The agency's poignant yet innovative approach utilises a 'trend-jacking' initiative by giving a creative twist to a viral social media trend.

The "Ek machhli paani mai gayi" (a fish went into the water) trend is a social media game that became popular on platforms like Instagram. In this game, participants engage in a playful exchange of phrases, beginning with "ek machhli" (one fish), followed by "paani mai gayi" (it went into the water), and then someone adds "chapaak" (splash). The game typically involves increasing the number of fish as the game progresses, and it has inspired numerous memes and reels due to its humorous and engaging nature.

Interactive Avenues has transformed the above into a series of poignant Instagram reels about 'Sheroes Hangout', a chain of cafes run by acid attack survivors. The films highlight the courage, resilience, and indomitable spirit of these ‘Sheroes’ who have been victims of extreme gender-based violence.

Expressing solidarity with the cause, Shantanu Sirohi, COO of Interactive Avenues, said, “We firmly believe in using our craft to make a difference not just to clients, but also to communities. Through this initiative, we wanted to boost Sheroes Hangout Cafe's visibility, attract more patrons, and raise funds for the rehabilitation of acid attack victims.”

As per a report from the Acid Survivors Foundation, around 70% of acid attacks are against women. These attacks not only lead to permanent physical disfigurement, but also affect the mental health, education, livelihood, and social well-being of the victims. 

Since 2013, Chhanv Foundation has been helping acid attack survivors and empowering them through much-needed medical treatment, surgeries, legal aid, education and skill training and employment opportunities. Sheroes Hangout is a social enterprise initiative by the Chhanv Foundation. 

Alok Dixit, founder of Chhanv Foundation, added, “Our mission is to stop acid attacks and create a more inclusive society where survivors are supported, respected, and given the opportunity to thrive. Heinous crimes like acid attacks can be reduced through public awareness campaigns, and our collaboration with Interactive Avenues marks a significant step in that direction."

Campaign’s take: The trauma of acid attack survivors persists long after their physical wounds have healed. Their primary challenge is gaining societal acceptance and leading normal lives—a daunting task. Initiatives like these, though not unique to India, are prevalent and offer a glimmer of hope, not only for the survivors but also for their families and society at large. Such efforts are excellent and long overdue in their mission to destigmatise the experiences of these individuals. Sheroes Hangout Café represents a significant step toward normalisation for these victims, reflecting a vital, broader movement. 

Campaign India

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