This Clever (But Kind of Creepy) Campaign Uses Mannequins to Help the Homeless

Sun, 15 Jun 2014 12:23:17 PDT

With housing prices on the rise and the effects of the Great Recession still being felt around the globe, walking past homeless people is an all too common occurrence. BADT, an Amsterdam-based nonprofit that assists that city’s increasing vagrant population, realized that even the most compassionate individual might feel discomfort while handing a dollar over to someone sleeping on the streets. However, they might not have that same fear of a “homeless” mannequin.

The organization put eliminating anxiety while giving at the heart of their new campaign: Piggy Banks for the Homeless. To raise money and awareness for the needy, BADT installed several mannequins all over Amsterdam where people often stay—on sidewalks, on benches, and under bridges. The group dressed the figures in ragged clothing, cut piggy-bank slots in their heads, and placed handwritten signs asking for donations alongside them. As the video above shows, the idea worked.

In a time where someone can put spikes on a sidewalk to keep away the homeless from a building, and a statue of a vagrant Jesus is needed to remind us that the poor are people too, the project effectively addresses a rarely talked about stigma. It’s unfortunate that for many, giving to an inanimate object is easier than interacting with a real person. But at the very least, the project can inspire better solutions for one of society’s most tragic problems. 

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Original article from TakePart