Announcing the cohort for our new Weston Communicating Climate programme!

Posted 29 March 2021

We’re so excited to announce the environment charities who will be taking part in our new Weston Communicating Climate programme, initiated and funded by the Garfield Weston Foundation. The six-month programme will offer free expert-led strategic communications training for 30 small to medium environment and climate charities working across the UK.

From climate justice and food systems to ocean protection and wildlife conservation, we received applications from over 80 fantastic charities working across a broad range of environmental issues, which made it incredibly difficult to select the 30 organisations for the programme.

We were really impressed by the calibre of applications we received and the huge potential for these charities to really shift the climate narrative and change hearts and minds.

Ceri Jones, Project Manager for the Weston Communicating Climate Programme at Media Trust

Saving the planet is now a communications challenge

As Sir David Attenborough put it in his inaugural Instagram post, ‘Saving the planet is now a communications challenge.’ We whole-heartedly agree. We also know, however, that communicating the scale, complexity and urgency of the climate crisis, while giving a voice to the most impacted but often the most under-represented individuals and communities is complex and challenging.

Garfield Weston Foundation’s Prioritising Our Planet report from October 2020 found that more than half of environmental organisations are struggling to communicate the scale and complexity of the crisis.

Last year, Covid dominated the news agenda making it even more challenging for environmental charities to cut through. However, especially with the COP26 summit being held in Glasgow this November, we think the time is right to jumpstart the climate agenda.

It’s for this reason that Media Trust and Garfield Weston Foundation are working in partnership to launch this exciting new programme which aims to give the environment sector a stronger voice.

Our vision is for effective environment and climate organisations to have great skill and capacity for impactful communications so they can reach new and wider audiences and accelerate change. This programme will help us achieve that.

Philippa Charles, Director, Garfield Weston Foundation

We believe the third sector needs to engage with media industry partners and embrace the latest communication techniques to drive positive behavioural change. We’re really excited about leveraging the creativity and skills of our media industry partners to benefit the programme.

Su-Mei Thompson, CEO at Media Trust

Training and mentoring from communications experts

Throughout the programme, our cohort of 30 charities will receive training in strategic communications, climate framing, compelling storytelling, engaging with the media and working with climate influencers, and digital fundraising. In addition, they will also receive media spokesperson training, a 1-2-1 communications strategy workshop with Media Trust’s media and creative industry partners, as well as peer-to-peer networking and support.

We are delighted to be working with a fantastic group of expert trainers and delivery partners including On Road Media, Climate Outreach, Andrew Davis, Reason Digital and Tom Martin for the programme.

Meet the Weston Communicating Climate 2021 cohort:

2050 Climate Group
A Rocha UK
Action for Conservation
British Society of Soil Science
Bumblebee Conservation Trust
Butterfly Conservation
Eastside Community Trust
Energy Sparks
Food Ethics Council
Groundwork Greater Manchester
Hebridean Whale & Dolphin Trust
Hope for the Future
Institution of Environmental Sciences
Julie’s Bicycle
People’s Trust for Endangered Species
Rewilding Britain
Royal Meteorological Society
Scotswood Garden
St Paul’s Youth Forum
Students for Global Health
The Bike Station
The Ecology Centre
The Orchard Project
The Rivers Trust
The Town & Country Planning Association
Trees for Life
Women’s Environmental Network
Wildlife Trust Wales

And finally, we’d like to give a shout out to, and acknowledge the contribution of, our fantastic Advisory Group for the programme comprising representatives from the BBC, Black Environment Network, Climate Outreach, Edelman, Grantham Institute, ITV, On Road Media, Purpose Disruptors, RSPB, Sky, the UK Youth Climate Coalition, WWF and Zero Waste Scotland.

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