Taking the beep test is something of a rite of passage for many young Kiwis. And Heart Kids and Method have put a modern, cricket-based spin on it in an effort to raise awareness of the charity.
As the new official charity of NZ Cricket, Heart Kids challenged some of cricket’s biggest fans to 'run their hearts out' on the purpose-built 'Quickest Little Wicket' activation, which was launched at the most recent Blackcaps vs. Sri Lanka match at Eden Park.
Competitors had to sprint between LED wickets to get their bat over the line within a set time and custom-built motion sensors on the ground tracked each runner’s pace and movement. The efforts were then put up on a real-time scoreboard and a host of prizes were handed out. Hundreds of cricketing fans took part on the day and there was even a surprise entry from Ben Hurley.
"Every week there seems to be a new Facebook campaign for one charity or another," says managing director of Method Studios Sam Ramlu. "We wanted to do something that was still digital but would stand out. With Quickest Little Wicket we created an experience as exciting as the match itself. We built an innovative challenge that let the New Zealand public engage and experience the heart of the charity, so to speak."
Eight months ago, Ramlu's own son Jesse was born, but he had a congenital heart disease and had to undergo emergency open heart surgery.
"Our connection with Heart Kids is a pretty personal one and we saw this opportunity as our chance to give back and raise more awareness of the great work Heart Kids do for Kiwi kids all over the country."
Heart Kids is the only charity in New Zealand dedicated to supporting those affected by a childhood heart condition. With over 450 open-heart surgeries being performed on tiny hearts at Starship every year, it helps provide over 2,500 families every year with practical and emotional services.
“The needs of babies and children who are living with a heart condition that has existed from conception are quite different from those who acquire heart disease later in life," says Rob Lutter, chief executive of Heart Kids. "We’ve never created a public awareness initiative that gets both kids and adults so actively involved in our brand and what we do. Quickest Little Wicket is the type of innovative work we’d like to keep creating as we keep raising awareness of Heart Kids and childhood heart disease."