This 'Open House' Isn't What It Seems

Stunt by the Salvation Army Targets Canadian Househunters

Published On
May 23, 2016

Editor's Pick

In Canada, the Salvation Army tried to open people's eyes to unseen poverty with a stunt that targeted househunters, putting out flyers promoting a real estate "open house."

From the outside the suburban home looked beautiful and well-kept but inside the charity, via Grey Canada, had turned it into an exhibition on Canadian poverty. The house was styled as though inhabited by a family living in poverty and was adorned with facts and figures such as the numbers of people who visit food banks, or rates of child illiteracy among families living below the poverty line. The reactions of the visitors were all filmed on hidden cameras. The tagline of the campaign is that "Poverty isn't always easy to see."

Online visitors can take a 360 degree virtual tour of the house at a special website, which leads to a donation page.

Setting up fake retail outlets or real estate to highlight serious causes is growing in popularity; recent campaigns have included States United Against Gun Violence's gun store stunt, while in New Zealand, domestic violence charity It's Not OK partnered with a home design magazine to showcase a house marred by violence.


May 23, 2016
Salvation Army Canada
Salvation Army Canada
Chief Creative Officer:
Patrick Scissons
Creative Director:
Joel Arbez
Creative Director:
James Ansley
Art Director:
Ryan McNeill
Sue Kohm
Account Executive:
Kit Kostandoff
Erica Metcalfe
Print Producer:
Elizabeth Macaulay
Mac Artist:
Steven Lobel
Director, Technology:
Marc Cattapan
Marc Cattapan
Darren Neville
Digital Producer:
Jaan Yew Woon
Production Company:
Skin and Bones Film Company
Fraser White
Executive Producer:
Liane Thomas
Line Producer:
Jeff Schwartz
Director, Photography:
Mark Peachey
Editorial Company:
Saints Editorial
Executive Producer:
Michelle Lee
Robin Haman
Post Production:
Alter Ego
Executive Producer:
Cheyenne Bloomfield
Tricia Hagoriles
Steve McGregor
Sound and Music:
Grayson Matthews
Executive Producer:
Kelly McCluskey

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