Sadly, we live in an era in which civil society is not well supported by local and national government. This is particularly so for BME groups, many of whom have folded in the last decade.
When we at OBV came to Esmée Fairbairn for support, just over a year ago, we said we didn’t want charity but rather a partner who believed, like us, we could change our world. We also stated that supporting a Black empowerment and racial justice project would not be a walk in the park. They agreed on both counts.
With that simple yet profound starting point OBV set about thinking big: The general election was around the corner so we under took three projects: firstly a voter registration campaign bus visiting 12 cities and registering thousands; secondly to launch the UK’s first voter registration app that would inspire, inform and empower BME individuals and thirdly, to convince ad-agency Saatchi and Saatchi to undertake a pro-bono campaign to reach millions.
The overall result was the three projects collectively were viewed 98 million times on TV and press. In the last week alone the campaign encouraged nearly one million people black and white to register to vote.