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Communities in Madagascar and Nepal take on the Mannequin Challenge

Have your Facebook, Twitter and Instagram feeds been looking eerily still recently?

2 Dec 2016

While 2014 was all about the Ice Bucket Challenge and 2015 brought us “The Dress” (was it blue/black or white/gold?!), this year’s social media craze has definitely been the #MannequinChallenge – with everyone from the England football team to Beyoncé taking part.

The idea is that people film themselves staying perfectly still in a challenging or funny situation, and post the videos online.

Never missing a trick, Ernest Randriarimalala, our Voices from the Field Officer in Madagascar, visited the community of Bevato and encouraged them to take part with some impressive results:


“At the start we tried to do the film with all the villagers, but it was unmanageable... so we decided to work only with few people,” says Ernest.

“Malagasy kids are used to playing a similar game so it was so easy for them, but it was tricky with adults as they always found something to laugh about. It took a while to get a good take, but it was very funny.”

And not wanting to miss out on the fun, local builders in Mahankaal, Nepal, also took a break from doing vital work to prepare the ground for a new reservoir that will provide piped water to every home in the community:


“It was quite difficult doing the Mannequin Challenge in a village with more goats than people,” says Mani Karmacharya, our Voices from the Field Officer in Nepal.

“They are all over the place – it was hard to keep them out of shot and impossible to make them stay still!”

Made of the same stuff

And whilst those taking on the Mannequin Challenge are standing still, together we’re making real progress in our challenge to reach the 663 million people living without safe water.

Every year, 78 million people are turning on a tap or using a pump for the first time. If just 8% more people can be reached a year, then everyone in the world would have clean water by 2030.

Ending the water crisis might sound impossible, but together we’re made of the stuff that makes history.

How history is made >