Learning how to tell our story and communicate impact at Digital Summer School

Posted 7 September 2022

Trudie Roiz de Sá is the Board Secretary for Power for the People. Last year, she took part in Media Trust's Digital Summer School to learn how to expand their communications and reach new audiences.

Power for the People (PFP) works in global communities to help them kickstart sustainable development. Our key beneficiaries are based in Kenya and Uganda, where we work with them on practical solutions that meet their needs, create economic opportunities, and build their capacity and capability to run the venture after we exit. We dub this approach of sustainable support: #handshakesnothandouts. 

As a small organisation, we wanted to expand our fundraising and volunteering opportunities, by identifying new avenues to increase our social media presence and further our outreach. This is where Digital Summer School came in. 

We signed up in the hope of improving our understanding of how to increase our reach and target different audiences. We wanted to learn how to communicate our impact using appropriate methods and tools already available to us as a small charity (such as Google Analytics). 

Three young people holding plants and smiling.

Children at Remba Primary School, in Kenya, started a vegetable garden with Power for the People.

One of our key goals in joining Digital Summer school was to learn how to communicate about our wide-ranging and dynamic work. Through the different sessions and workshops, we discovered how to identify a common theme for the many different causes and focuses we work on, allowing us to demonstrate what we do, and the impact it has, to audiences. 

My favourite session was on content planning. It helped me organise and structure, both in terms of posts and campaigns. I also learnt how to develop content so that it told a story – helping us to engage our target audience by bringing to life our mission and purpose.  

Digital Summer School has had a remarkable impact on PFP’s communications – not only in terms of increasing our numbers, but – more importantly – in terms of real-world support and our wider organisational direction. 

The industry mentors were great! Not only could I connect with them and expand my network, but I also got to ask them questions on how to grow my skills, which helped me to learn about social media best-practise for small charities.

Power for the People logo.

The enhanced skills, updated strategy, and increased capacity has led to a direct impact on the people that PFP support. Thanks to the learnings from Digital Summer School, we have managed to fundraise nearly £10,000 from digital campaigns – such as The Big Give. 

Along with revamping our Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages to be sleeker and up to date, we also established a successful LinkedIn page. The course allowed us to create a new social media and communications strategy which lead to development across all platforms. For example, our LinkedIn account has seen an 800% increase in the last year! 

With the increased understanding of communications, we decided that increasing time and capacity for this area was vital for our success and growth. We have since hired dedicated communications staff to support our small, but mighty, marketing and comms team! 

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