Women's Aid has released a chilling film to highlight that domestic violence increases around sporting tournaments, such as the ongoing Fifa World Cup.
The spot, launched to coincide with the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women on 25 November, follows research from Lancaster University that found domestic violence incidents can surge by as much as 38% around key tournaments.
House 337 has created an unsettling film in order to raise awareness. Filmed in a single shot, it is set in a generic cul-de-sac draped in England flags, as the community supports their national team.
As people enjoy the excitement of the football game inside their homes, the final house on the street tells a different tale, with the mood changing as the cheers stop. The viewer soon notices the England flag which reads: “He’s coming home,” highlighting the fear and isolation that many women will experience throughout the tournament.
It was created by Holly Fallows and Charlotte Watmough, and directed by Sara Dunlop through The Corner Shop.
The film is part of Women’s Aid’s two-year "Come together to end Domestic Abuse" campaign, which will run until 2024. The campaign encourages the public to act together wherever they are and use actions big and small to end domestic abuse.
“There is a role to play for everyone in helping to end domestic abuse, and raising awareness of the support available during major tournaments like the upcoming World Cup can help many women living with abusive partners,” Farah Nazeer, chief executive of Women’s Aid, said.
“While domestic abuse is not caused by football, we know existing abuse can become more severe or frequent during big tournaments. We ask everyone to help share this important campaign at a time when many women need to know how to get support.”
Christopher Ringsell, creative director at House 337, added: “During this time as the nation comes together we want to subvert the usual football tropes and shine a light on the chilling fact that for many women it’s a time of fear not celebration.
“They need your support too. The visual spectacle of the flag retains its power, but with a new, chilling twist. We want to encourage people to be aware of friends and neighbours in their community and come together to try to end domestic abuse. To seek out tangible things they can do to Be Women’s Aid.”