A powerful new ad from Indonesia warns people not to turn a blind eye to the issue of child marriage—by way of a disturbing device.
Created via M&C Saatchi, the spot opens on a little girl bouncing on a bed, to the sound of creaking bed springs and the girl panting. The text on screen then asks the viewer: "Now, close your eyes." Suddenly the panting and squeaking takes on a different and more disturbing context as we're told "more than three million children are forced into adulthood before they turn 15. Open your eyes."
Running on social media and in out-of-home locations using the hashtag #StopChildMarriage, the campaign was developed for Indonesian Family Planning Association (PKBI), a non-governmental organization that aims to improve women’s access to health, decrease the rate of maternal mortality and tackle the pernicious impacts of child marriage. It coincides with International Women’s Day and falls against the backdrop of the Indonesian Parliament amending its marriage laws by increasing legal consent from 16 to 19 in September 2019.
"The idea came from the thought that if you keep your eyes closed to the issue, you are changing a child’s life for the worse; you’re putting them in that situation; you’re ruining their childhood. Hence, we ask people to open their eyes to injustice happening to the girl child, which is hidden in plain sight,” said Anish Daryani, CEO, M&C Saatchi Indonesia, in a statement.