Innocents Abroad (well, in the UK)

10 September 2008

Mary-Helen reminded me recently of a fund-raising campaign that Innocents, a drinks company in the UK, ran last year.  They persuaded people to knit miniature hats for the drinks bottles and for every hat knitted they donated 50p (just over an AU Dollar) to a charity for the elderly.  I’ve just noticed that they’re running this again this year. 

I’m all for helping the elderly, or anyone else who needs help, but is this really the way to do it?  I know the 50 pences add up (to 200,000 pounds I think last year) but I think it’s really an enormous waste of time and skills for a knitter and is a massive marketing campaign for the company. 

Knitting is an excellent skill to have to help people in need.  There are always people in the world (or in your town or street) who need clothing.  Just a hat can keep someone warm/help their self-esteem/cheer them up. 

And that’s worth more than 50p of anyone’s money.   

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  1. I didn’t know the details, but I do remember someone in the UK writing to me about this, and how great it was. She works in a charity for aged gay and lesbian people. I was pretty cynical, and said maybe it would be better to be knitting things that the old people could actually wear! And what do they do with the little ‘hats’ when they’ve finished? Throw them away, I’d guess.

  2. I guess the alternative would be for Innocent Drinks to spend their marketing money on some random press campaign giving their money to the Murdochs, nothing gets knitted, no money gets raised and the elderly get nothing.

    I think there’s huge value in brands aligning with consumers to do good, as well as get some marketing mileage out of it.

    But then again, i would….

  3. Oh yeah!

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