A harrowing short video showing what it would be like for a child if civil war came to the UK has gone viral. Produced by Save the Children organisation, the video has gone viral since it was release on Wednesday.
The 45-second video is part of the charity’s Save Syria’s Children campaign, and shows how a young girl’s life is destroyed in a span of one year after war has ravaged Britain.
Save the Children is inviting viewers to imagine “if Britain were Syria” with the clip.
It starts with the girl’s joyous birthday celebration, and ends with her birthday a year later, only this time in a much sadder setting.
At the beginning of the clip, the young girl happily blows out the candles on her cake. As the seconds progress, she is seen living the life of a typical, carefree child in the UK, riding her bike, playing with her friends, and eating sweets.
A few seconds more and the commotion in her background starts to manifest, with her parents panicking and preparing to leave. The electricity in their home is then cut off, and the girl is seen being rushed down the stairs, asking, “What’s happening?”
After a while, her dad is separated from her and her mother at a checkpoint, and they are taken to a hospital by soldiers.
The last scene shows her mother singing “happy birthday” to her, as she unenthusiastically just looks at the lone candle on a dish.
“Just because it isn’t happening here, doesn’t mean it isn’t happening,” the video’s text reads at the end.
“It may not be happening here but in Syria the horror portrayed in our latest video is all too real,” the organisation explained.
“Three years of civil war has devastated the lives of an entire generation of children. It’s cost the lives of more than 11,000 children and turned more than 1 million into refugees. It has subjected them to trauma, indiscriminate shelling and even torture.”
The video was released to commemorate the third anniversary of the conflict in the war-ravaged Syria, which began in March 2011. It currently has over 20.8 million views on YouTube.