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Homeless People Forecast Weather on TV in Europe

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Homeless people are being recruited as TV presenters in Europe, in a drive to raise awareness for the plight of people living on the streets across the continent.

In an initiative called "Days of Hope," Saatchi & Saatchi Berlin has persuaded TV stations to allow homeless people to read weather bulletins in place of the usual weather news readers, drawing attention to the conditions that the homeless endure every day.

On TV, they talk about the weather through the eyes of homeless people, highlighting how the cold and rain directly affects their lives and those of homeless children in the same areas. At the end of the forecast, presenters ask people to "Donate for better times, donate for the Days of Hope."

Broadcasts have already aired in Russia and Romania, and will soon be screened in Germany, Switzerland and Poland, thanks to the co-operation of local TV stations.

The campaign was originally created as a radio spot in Germany, but has been extended across Europe through the Saatchi network.

John Pallant, Saatchi & Saatchi regional creative director for EMEA, said in a statement, "This is a very simple, but surprising, idea, which we are expecting to get a lot of attention, stimulate conversations around this important issue, and most important of all, increase donations."

Such campaigns are also good pr for the agencies. DDB, New York took a similar route recently by making people feel uncomfortable in the #firstworldproblems campaign for the Water is Life charity. The agency created a film in which people in Haiti recited tweets about "problems" such as "I hate when my leather seats aren't heated" and "I hate it when my house is so big I need two wireless routers."

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