Volunteering with Women’s Voices helped me boost a domestic violence charity’s social reach

Posted 20 November 2023

Chloe Dowdle, the Senior Social and Digital Manager at Warner Bros. Discovery, took part in our Women’s Voices event where she was partnered with Loving Me, a charity dedicated to supporting trans, non-binary and gender-queer people in England aged 18+ who have experienced violence and domestic abuse. This is the only organisation of its kind in the UK, and it’s part of the Emily Davidson Centre in Accrington.

Women’s Voices allowed Chloe to bring her skills and expertise to a charity facing challenges; sharing the stories of survivors through communications support is so important for empowering trans communities in our society, especially as last year’s Women’s Voices theme was ‘embracing equity’. Chloe also boosted her professional confidence and tackled her impostor syndrome by taking part in Women’s Voices.

Chloe’s background 

I am currently the Senior Social and Digital Manager at Warner Bros. Discovery, where I manage the team working across our social media platforms and website for our TV and streaming services. I’ve been in the social media game for six years, with more than four years’ experience in the media industry. 

My involvement with Media Trust began when Warner Bros. Discovery partnered with them to produce the eye-opening Black Britain Unspoken series. I knew I wanted to do more with Media Trust, and then heard about Women’s Voices. This is an initiative bringing professionals from across the media and creative industry together with charities that support, campaign and advocate for women and girls. I jumped at the chance to join in, and I was soon paired with Loving Me, which provides crucial support and advocacy for transgender and non-binary people.  

Meeting Loving Me 

The challenge Loving Me faced was twofold. Firstly, as a new charity, they struggled to get their message out there, to reach the people who needed their support. Secondly, as the transgender and non-binary community have been let down by services in the past, the charity needed to make sure that their message and voice was one that people could trust. Continuous attacks on the community and the absence of support have led to a lack of trust. 

Data from the ONS shows that hate crimes against the trans community has increased by 186% in the past 5 years, and hate crimes based on sexual orientation or trans identity are more likely to involve violence or threats of violence. What’s more, data journalist Ell Folan wrote in Pink News that they believe the rise in British transphobia is linked to hostile coverage of trans people in the press. 

The goals set by Loving Me were to revamp their social strategy, connect with those who might need their services (or know someone in need), and ultimately increase referrals. 

We were paired with Chloe and a team of industry experts who each had an excellent knowledge of their individual specialisms. They broke things down in a way that was so much more manageable for a charity organisation with limited capacity.

Loving Me logo. Laura Cobham - Case Worker / Digital & Tech Coordinator, Emily Davison Centre

Sharing her expertise 

Along with three other industry experts, I met the Loving Me team face-to-face at the Women’s Voices event on International Women’s Day in March. Together, we worked through the charity’s brief to come up with innovative ideas on how to overcome their lack of outreach and connect with a wider audience. 

I created a comprehensive social media “bible” for the charity, which acts as guide for all they need to know on growing across each platform and creating compelling content. 

Our social media following has doubled on Instagram since then, and we have continued to create suitable content.

Loving Me logo. Laura Cobham - Case Worker / Digital & Tech Coordinator, Emily Davison Centre

The impact 

The impact of our collaboration is clear: Loving Me’s social media following doubled since the Women’s Voices event. Knowing that I played a part in helping Loving Me reach more people was incredibly rewarding. 

On a personal note, this experience served as a powerful reminder of my abilities and the difference I can make. It’s easy to suffer from imposter syndrome, especially as a young woman in the media industry, I often feel like just a ‘small fish in a big pond.’ Taking part in Women’s Voices reinforced my expertise and confidence, and I loved using it to support a meaningful cause. 

As a domestic abuse service, we struggled to create content that was engaging without showing faces or people. Our experts helped us to find ways around this that met all of our service's needs, while also boosting our social media profiles. We’re still in touch with them and we can’t thank them enough!

Loving Me logo. Laura Cobham - Case Worker / Digital & Tech Coordinator, Emily Davison Centre

Working with Loving Me was an incredibly fulfilling experience. I really connected with the team on the day of the Women’s Voices event, and I’ve been in touch with them ever since. I hope that the next time I’m ‘up north,’ I can meet the team in person again. I was also honoured when Amanda, Loving Me’s founder, asked me to mentor Laura, their Digital Coordinator. 

To anyone considering volunteering for Women’s Voices, my advice is simple: stop thinking and just do it! Not only will you contribute to a worthy cause, but you’ll also meet remarkable people, grow your network and skills, and meaningful connections.  

Useful resources 

Violence against the trans community is a distressing topic, so if you need support for any of the issues raised here, or you’d like to find out more about supporting the trans community, check out these links: 

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