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Christian Aid finds South East full of villains

Howard Lake | 15 May 2003 | News

Christian Aid is drawing a ‘morality map’ of Britain – and while the south east remains riddled with villains, the number of heroes overall has been rapidly on the increase since the beginning of Christian Aid Week. Ireland, Wales and the south west are now coming out top of the poll with by far the most heroes in the country.
Visitors to www.christianaidweek.org are invited to put their morals to the test with Christian Aid’s Herometer – a quiz which places contestants in humorous moral dilemmas. The total points scored by every participant are added to a morality map of the country.
The Herometer game consists of ten questions ranging from what people would do if they slip on a kebab and notice a wad of notes poking out from the pitta and how they would react if their double agent one-night stand talks in their sleep to reveal that France is about to invade Germany.
Towards the end of Christian Aid Week, over 3,140 people had put their morals to the test, with many more entering each day as the quiz continues. In total almost half of all quiz participants came out as mere mortals, 36.7% rated as villains and a disappointing 13.6% scored as heroes.
The south east hosts by far the most villains with contestants scoring only 20 points out of a possible 40 on average. Scotland, the north of England and the Midlands are dotted with mere mortals sporting an average score of 25, and Wales, Ireland and the south west are coming out top in the poll with most heroes and an average score of 29.
This makes a worrying third of Britain’s villains – while heroes remain in a minority and superheroes are virtually non-existent. But the figures are certainly looking up from only a week ago, when a third of quiz participants came out as arch-villains, more than half rated as villains and a measly 13% scored as mere mortals – with no heroes anywhere in sight.
“This is obviously a bit of fun, but we are surprised to discover so many ‘villains’ in Britain,” said Sue Bishop, Head of Media at Christian Aid. “Maybe giving to Christian Aid Week will help them redeem themselves!”
The microsite www.christianaidweek.org was launched in April 2003 and explores the theme of ‘local heroes’ all over the world, showcasing people who have contributed significantly to their community against overwhelming odds – people such as Guerda Alexis, who runs an HIV-prevention programme with Christian Aid partner APROSIFA in Haiti, the poorest country in the western hemisphere.
The website also features a clip of actor Joseph Fiennes launching Christian Aid’s hard-hitting new report ‘Fuelling poverty: oil, war and corruption’ and number of other celebrities, including chart-topping singer songwriter Beverley Knight and the celebrated war artist John Keane, who have exclusively revealed their own personal heroes to Christian Aid.
Ends
For more information about the microsite or Christian Aid Week contact
Kati Dshedshorov on 020 7523 2452 or email kd**********@ch***********.org OR
Saskia Wirth on 020 7523 2404 or email sw****@ch***********.org
Notes to Editors:
1. Christian Aid Week (11-17 May 2003) is the UK’s longest-running and most successful door-to-door fundraising week. It started in 1957. Last year over 350,000 volunteers raised £13.5 million. For further details visit www.christianaidweek.org .
2. Christian Aid Week is easy to get involved in, whether it is by holding a sponsored event, putting loose change in the famous red envelope or even logging onto www.christianaidweek.org.uk to enter a writing competition and make a pledge.
3. The Christian Aid Week microsite has been designed by Kleber, one of the UK’s most cutting-edge new media agencies, with a client base that has included luminaries including Warp Records, MTV Europe, Kylie Minogue, The Beatles, Ninja Tune, The Designers Republic and the Manic Street Preachers.
4. The Herometer comprises 10 questions with each answer receiving between 1-4 points. The minimum score is therefore 10 and the maximum score 40. The Herometer ratings are: 10-15 arch-villain; 16-21 villain; 22-28 mere mortal; 29-34 hero; 35-40 superhero. Over 3,140 people have taken the test so far.
5. To find out more about Christian Aid’s development work, read news stories, features, press releases and reports, and view web clips and photo galleries take a look at www.christianaid.org.uk. The site also includes up-to-date information about Christian Aid’s campaigns, partner organisations, events, exhibitions and a variety of resources that can be downloaded for fundraising events and for campaigning initiatives to raise awareness about issues such as fair trade, HIV/AIDS, emergency relief, the environment and sustainable development.
May 2003

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