As part of its ongoing ambition to tackle period poverty in the UK, social enterprise Hey Girls is calling on Brits across the country to SEE RED about the inequality people experience on a monthly basis – and take action.
With 1 in 10 young people in Britain currently unable to afford their period (and as many as half of these people turning to newspaper or other means as alternatives), increasing access to period products continues to be extremely important. Further, period poverty surged in 2020 during the COVID pandemic, with a survey by the charity Plan International revealing that as many as one third of 14 to 21s in the UK struggled to access or afford period products during lockdown.
In response to this, Hey Girls, which operates a Buy One Give Onemodel, is launching #SeeingRed – a campaign designed to get the nation angry about period inequality and help drive change.
The pro-period not-for-profit has enlisted the scientific support of Associate Professor of Psychological and Brain Science, Dr Philip Gable, who has been investigating the motivating roles of emotions such as anger for over 15 years, to develop a scientifically emotion-driven film that is designed to quite literally drive anger in those that watch it.
Dr Philip Gable, Ph.D Associate Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Delaware said:
“Most of us commonly view anger as being a negative emotion, but it’s what’s actually known as an approach-motivated emotion. There is neurological evidence that feeling angry can motivate people to correct the thing they are angry about and take positive action, when presented an easy or obvious solution.”
“When the team at Hey Girls came to me, we quite quickly realised that channelling anger was the best motivator to create conversation and, ultimately, drive positive change around period poverty.”
In order to capture attention and evoke anger in viewers, psychological tactics were used throughout the film – from its narrative arc and character depictions, to the soundtrack, pace and use of colour. Further, showcasing ‘violations’, despair, shame and a clear subject to empathise with were also included throughout the final film.
The #SeeingRed film – created by adam&eveDDB – was tested against a sample group of 400 UK adults, with emotions tested pre- and post-viewing. It was successful in making people angrier – with women up to four times and men up to three times angrier after viewing. Additionally, more than 75% of respondents believed that the film made them feel angrier about the state of period poverty in the UK, and as many as 85% of women (65% in men) claimed it made them want to help3.
Celia Hodson, founder and CEO of Hey Girls CIC, said:
“Period poverty in the UK, or anywhere for that matter, is something many of us aren’t aware of or feel inherently connected to. It is something that we should be angry about. Poverty is happening on our streets and is something each individual can help to change.”
“We hope #SeeingRed will put a bloody spotlight on the unjust realities of period poverty and encourage those who watch it to pay attention to the issue and then motivate them to do something about it. We want to show people how a simple switch in behaviour or small action, such as opting for one of Hey Girls’ period products, can directly support people in most need.”
The #SeeingRed campaign will be available to watch on the Hey Girls website – as the science-backed R18, anger-driving film – as well as subsequent print adverts, which will feature anonymous, real quotes about negative (and some excruciatingly unbelievable) comments from Brits’ perception of what period poverty is in the UK. Lifted from digital and online social sharing platforms, example quotes include “all these girls pleading poverty, will have phones in their pockets”, “if you can’t find 23p for your daughter to bleed in maybe you need to look at your life and make changes…” and “period poverty is insulting nonsense stealing again from hard working taxpayers”.
Hey Girls is calling on the help of people across the country to raise awareness of this shocking reality and make people SEE RED and feel red about it too. To get involved, people can show support through sharing #SeeingRed, by purchasing one of its Buy One Give One products or making a donation to support its work against period poverty.
For more information on Hey Girls or to view the latest campaign film, head to www.heygirls.co.uk/seeingred/