The Mannequin Project

What did you worry about when you were a child?

Today, the majority of children aged 10 – 11 are unhappy with their bodies, and have actively tried to manage their weight in the last year.1

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Kids growing up today are facing body image in a way that’s never been seen before

Somehow conversations about how we look have become confused with what we have to offer the world.

Now feelings of inadequacy, isolation and self-doubt are reaching unprecedented levels in young people and – let’s face it – in adults, too.

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Why has body dissatisfaction become a problem?

8 to 18 year olds now spend around 8 hours every day engaged in media.


That’s half of their waking freaking life.

The fact is, in today’s world, there’s a lot more media out there; there’s a lot more to think about, and kids are exposed to adult ideas just as much as grown-ups.

Without the same levels of life experience, they’re a lot more vulnerable to influence and anxiety.

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Where do kids learn stuff these days?

pop culture

social media

playground conversations

conversations at home

The good news is there’s a solution we can all be part of right now and it all starts with education and awareness

The Mannequin Project is a collaboration between experts and creatives to turn the tide on body dissatisfaction by:

get the right ideas

getting the right ideas

right people

to the right people

engaging stories

in the right way

By putting storytelling at the heart of our approach, we can shine a light on body dissatisfaction and turn educational initiatives into fun and engaging content that people want to watch and talk about.

We produced this video to show the effects that negative self-talk can have on us, and our children.

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Get Involved

The Mannequin Project has done a lot of stuff to raise awareness over the past year, but we’ve still got a long road ahead of us. We’re always looking for partners to join us on this journey, and there are a number of ways that you can get involved. In particular, we need:

We’re currently raising funds to create content for:

  • An education program
  • A feature length documentary
  • An online engagement campaign

To learn more, or to contribute to our documentary, please visit TMP on the Documentary Australia Foundation (DAF) website.

DAF logo-white

Our Vision

The Mannequin Project is all about encouraging people to be the best versions of themselves and the version they really want to be. A big part of this is having a healthy lifestyle, a healthy body and a healthy mind.

Worrying excessively about our appearance can take a lot of time away from us, and often erodes our confidence.

That’s why we started The Mannequin Project. To find and create stories that help people stop and think about what’s influencing them so they can make clearer, better choices about what’s really important to them.

Expert Quotes

‘I am very excited to support and be involved with The Mannequin Project. The Mannequin Project’s ultimate goal is to start a new type of conversation about body image that anyone can be part of because ultimately it affects all of us.’

Dr Rick Kausman, Author & Medical Doctor

‘There’s so many ways that The Mannequin Project can be positive and the research definitely supports this approach to making change happen.’

Professor Susan J Paxton , School of Psychological Science, La Trobe University

‘The team have gone above and beyond in their dedication to seek a deep understanding of body image and the various factors that shape the way we feel about ourselves and our bodies.’

Fiona Sutherland , Accredited Dietician, Body Positive Australia

‘The Butterfly Foundation recognises that The Mannequin Project goes to the heart of body image issues – enabling experts in this area to be part of their process, ensures the project is supported by evidence and research.’

Christine Morgan, CEO, Butterfly Foundation