Top 10 International Development Videos 2022

It’s been quite a while since I last posted my lists of favourite YouTube videos which cover issues related to development, so I thought it was time for a new list! To be honest, I haven’t seen as many good videos as I used to in previous years. Perhaps charities and NGOs are allocating their social media spend on Instagram and TikTok instead?

MSF Norway – Anti-Racism: When you picture Doctors Without Borders, what do you see?

I love this video which explains MSF Norway’s approach to reduce racist stereotypes of white saviours and powerless victims. See my longer blog post for more information.

Chance for Childhood – #Overexposed Campaign

In a similar vain to MSF, this video explains how Chance for Childhood have decided to remove identifiable features of children in their campaigns. My thoughts in another blog post.

Oxfam – 75 years of second hand style

Simple shareable video promoting second hand fashion in the build up to Christmas.

Save the Children – 2022 A Year in Pictures and the stories behind them

Brilliant campaign which explains the stories behind the photography process! There is also a great accompanying microsite.

Charity Water – The journey of your donation

Simple video explaining how donations reach communities around the world.

Greenpeace – The TRUTH about our recycling – The Big Plastic Count Results

Effective explainer about the UK recycling system and its many flaws.

Doctors Without Borders UK – Can storytelling help to save lives?

Similar to the first two videos, this video explains the process of co-creating stories of change. Some nice animations but the audio quality is quite poor in parts.

UNICEF – We throw out 3 e-waste objects for every newborn

I’m a huge fan of collage which is probably why this caught my eye, however there are some interesting facts in this video explainer about e-waste.

Amnesty International – How companies from your country may be linked to war crimes in Myanmar

Some disturbing facts in this reportage style video. Great graphics.

Plan International and Karma’s World: Collaboration

Plan International’s first-ever animated Global Ambassador. Interesting….

International Development Videos 2016

I started curating videos about International Development in 2013. There was no particular criteria, I wanted to showcase a few videos that inspired some emotion within me. Some of the videos were thought provoking, others were inspirational, innovative, educational or brought a tear to me eye. Since then I have been on SAIH’s Rusty and Golden Radiator Panel which aims to critique the use of video in humanitarian communications. Below are a few videos I’ve found interesting this year.

Here are links to videos that caught my eye in 2014 and 2015.

UNICEF – #SyriaCrisis: 5 Years in 60 seconds

Adopt a Dane Foundation – Africa is rescuing old people from Denmark


Project Literacy – The Alphabet of Illiteracy

Charity:Water – Fight Dirty With Us

Plan International UK – What do girls really learn at school? Learn without fear

Islamic Relief – Countries in Conflict

UNICEF – A storybook wedding – except for one thing

WaterAid – Manpons

UNICEF – Unfairy Tales: Malak and boat

Save the Children – Still The Most Shocking Day

WaterAid – Claudia Sings Sunshine on a Rainy Day

Plan International – Mamie’s Dream

Norway’s First Child Bride

A colleague has just shared the latest campaign from Plan International about a child bride in Norway called Thea. It is extremely clever and like several other successful development campaigns this year it transports a situation that is an everyday occurrence in some cultures into the context that the charity’s donors can relate to.

Thea is a fictional 12 year old girl who is going to marry her fiancee, Geir, who is 37 years old (the same age as her Dad). The blog has caused outrage in Norway and many other countries, but Thea’s situation is a reality for millions of girls globally. The campaign has captured the attention of the World’s media with articles written in the Huffington Post, Independent, BBC and Buzzfeed as well as radio and television. Over 400 people turned up at the church to protest against the fake wedding.

It seems that this style of campaign resonates with western audiences. Earlier this year Save The Children released their appeal for Syria which has had over 34 million views. The next most popular charity video that I’m aware of is Oxfam’s pregnant breakdancers with 1.5 million views. So why is this form of storytelling more effective? I suppose it helps visualise the old adage “It could never happen to us.”

A spokesperson for Plan International said “With the help of Plan celebrity ambassadors, who tweeted about the blog, the story soon went viral and had more than 130,000 readers in the first day. Several hundred readers added comments saying they were horrified, advising the girl that a marriage like this is illegal according to Norwegian laws. Some even contacted the police.”

The blog has had over 1 million unique views in Norway alone!