Choose Love

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Intriguing concept how to rebalance digital with humanity: ‘Choose Love’ pop-up stores in London and New York sold over the holidays Christmas presents for refugees.

The pop-up store off Carnaby Street has been set up by the charity Help Refugees and invites visitors to “shop your heart out, leave with nothing, and feel the love”. Shoppers can buy a range of items for refugees, including sleeping bags, emergency blankets and solar lamps.

“Christmas is a time of giving in abundance, but it makes you think about people who aren’t as lucky as we are,” said Josie Naughton, the chief executive of Help Refugees. “When you look at the stats of how much money is spent on Black Friday and compare that to the need in the world, it’s quite shocking.

As expected, customers reacted with empathy and love:

“We could never ever have predicted the success of the store. The way people have responded to it was amazing. People were coming into the physical shop, see a child’s boot and burst into tears,” Naughton said. The store showcases children’s shoes and coats to humanise a refugee crisis that’s largely spoken about in numbers, she said.

Refugeehelp was manifested in a store and you could buy items that could then be send to the refugees. Everything a refugee would want could be purchased. You are engendering this feeling of humanity.

A wonderful example how to bring the refugee crisis to life, move it from the overwhelming digital maelstrom to the reality of being a refugee, engendering humanity and empathy.

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