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‘Sexy’ children’s charity video goes viral

‘You want me to say that’s sexy?’ a fashion model asks the director in the charity video stunt

Published: Updated:

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo,“one out of every seven children die before their fifth birthday,” a breathy, poised voice purrs from the serene, rose-pink lips of a model. Immediately afterwards, her impeccably made-up eyes flash with just a hint of guilt.

“You want me to say that’s sexy?” another model asks, after being prompted to recount the grim statistic of 18,000 young children dying each day from largely preventable causes.

The scene – which appears to have been filmed amidst a glamorous backdrop of an impromptu, pre-catwalk fashion shoot in New York – was posted on video-sharing site Youtube by global charity group Save the Children.

Since being posted on the site three days ago, the video has so far garnered almost 900,000 views.

Traumatizing

Some of the models seen in the video were “traumatized” by having to recount the grim facts, according to one of the creative brains behind the video.

“Some people were traumatized by what was being asked of them, some laughed uncomfortably, but all reactions were in some way relatable,” Vincent Peone, one of the video’s creative directors, said in an interview with U.S.-based Elle magazine.

However, the video was met with a hostile response from some Youtube users.“This commercial made absolutely no sense. It's very unclear what they're trying to satirize and how it relates to the charity they're promoting,” one user wrote.

“The money spent doing this ‘publicity stunt’ could have been used to save said children. There is no way this was cheap,” wrote another.

A blog article on the website of U.S.-based media organization NPR summarized the public’s reaction to the video.

“Some of the comments for the Youtube posting of the Save the Children ad talk about how hot the models are. But others talk about the issues of child and maternal health. The hope is that some of those folks will click on the ‘learn more’ slug at the end and perhaps make a donation,” the article said.

Earlier this year, the UK-based charity released a campaign video depicting what life would be like for British children if a Syrian-style civil war began in London.