Following the victory of the England Lionesses in the Women's Euros this month, plenty of brands have been celebrating. While some have also made calls to address the inequality that still exists in the U.K. game, charity Christian Aid has gone one further and decided to draw attention to the plight of soccer-loving women in the rest of the world.
An out-of-home campaign taglined "Not All Lionesses Roar" includes digital ad vans drawing awareness to the fact that half the women in the world are still not even allowed to play the sport (which, shockingly, was still the case in the U.K. from 1921 to 1971), and in some cases face persecution for simply turning up to watch a game. For example, just recently, the deputy head of Afghanistan’s cultural commission proclaimed that “women’s sport was neither appropriate nor necessary.”
The vans are roaming key locations in London, Birmingham and Liverpool, and attended major sporting events this weekend, including high-profile soccer matches and at the Commonwealth Games. The campaign will also include full page ads in national newspapers The Times, The Observer and The Sunday Telegraph. The charity has also made posts on Twitter, some of which have already been picked up by Members of Parliament.
The work, part of the charity's wider creative platform United by Hope, was created by creative agency Impero with media planned by Goodstuff.
“The campaign is designed to tap into the injustice of gender inequalities just as the focus returns to men's football," said Chris Tyas, chief strategy officer at Impero, in a statement. "A lot of brands left the conversation at a big 'well done' to the Lionesses. And that is exactly when Christian Aid is picking up the baton. We are asking people to believe in hope that change can happen.”
“Like so many others I was surprised to learn that women were banned from playing football in England for 50 years," added Kimberley Ferguson, brand manager at Christian Aid. " The Lionesses show what can be achieved when women are given access to an even playing field. Every girl should have the ability to play if they want to, regardless of where they are born.”