VML: CALM’s Unseen Signals

England Women's football player Fran Kirkby on the ground after being injured

VML: CALM’s Unseen Signals

Shining a light on the rising rates of suicide in young women

Over the course of FIFA’s 2023 Women’s World Cup, it was estimated that 14 young women in the UK would take their own lives, with recent ONS data revealing that one woman under the age of 25 dies by suicide every two days.  

VML teamed up with CALM (Campaign Against Living Miserably) to create a national suicide prevention campaign, highlighting the mental health struggles faced by young women.  

The campaign, featuring England Lioness and CALM ambassador Fran Kirby, uses a mix of existing gameplay and green screen moments of Fran calling for help on the pitch and being ignored.

Almost a fifth (19%) of young women aged between 18-34 in the past five years have felt either dismissed or invisible when speaking up about a mental health crisis. The powerful work draws on parallels faced by young women who are suicidal, whose calls for help can be misunderstood or ignored. The film ends with a message ‘No signal for help should go unseen. Your support could help save a life.’  

The campaign ran throughout FIFA’s 2023 Women’s World Cup online and on TV, and was also supported by DOOH, OOH and in print – running across sites throughout the UK in publications such as Women’s Health and Stylist.