Female media industry talent comes together to support female-focused charities

Posted 15 March 2018

For a second year, we marked International Women’s Day with our Women’s Voices event. The event gives charities that support and campaign for women and girls the opportunity to gain strategic media advice and mentoring from some of the most talented women in the media industry.

This year’s International Women’s Day had one striking headline aim – #PressForProgress. We’re proud to have welcomed 29 female focused charitable organisations to our Women’s Voices event, each driving real progress for women and girls around the UK.

The organisations descended on the Google Academy in London from all corners of the UK to brainstorm communications and creative ideas on how they can best deliver their messages and support women and girls around the world.

All about team work

The charities were joined by female volunteers from leading media organisations, including creative agencies, media agencies, broadcasters, media owners, press and social networks.

Once the teams were acquainted and settled, each charity had the chance to spell out their media and comms challenges, which wildly varied from prompting their causes on a global stage, through to driving the smallest amount of social network interaction.

The hugely experienced army of volunteers eagerly absorbed information, building to-do lists and briefs for their ‘clients’ for the evening, before applying their vast knowledge to the challenges faced.

team 9 sitting around a table brainstorming

With and For Girls Collective discuss their communications challenge with their team.

What did the volunteers think?

For many that gave up time the experience was both moving and empowering. Bridget Harney from the BBC said “I feel an overwhelming urge to reach out and help all of the organisations here. It’s great to see the wider media feels the same and are here to help.”

For others the experience was an eye opener. Wavemaker’s Abigail Russell said “Big brands have huge budgets and massive flexibility to influence people. It’s great to lend my skills to an organisation with a small budget that really needs the help.”

Everything we do as a charity is done in-house. We would normally never get the chance to work with media specialists like the volunteers here today.

Megan McKay and Karen Shepherd, Cherished Gowns UK

A big impact

Most importantly, each charity took away new knowledge and ideas to support their vial work. Megan McKay and Karen Shepherd of Cherished Gowns UK said, “Everything we do as a charity is done in-house. We would normally never get the chance to work with media specialists like the volunteers here today.”

Smart Works’ Samantha Jones said, “We’re a small charity with limited resource – Media Trust has given us access to some excellent minds that really know their stuff.”

The most fulfilling part for everyone in attendance was knowing their time spent would ultimately make a tangible difference. On a day of such importance, focussing on pushing for progress, it was the words of Jean Yeomans and Mandi Julian from SEEDS Cornwall that reinforced how important the event was: “SEEDs is 12 survivors of domestic abuse – our access to Media Trust helps us provide more access to other survivors in Cornwall.”


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