Charity maximises educational opportunities for more children
School-Home Support (SHS) is a charity which works with children and families to maximise educational opportunities and improve their life chances.
Partnering with schools, local authorities and communities, SHS looks beyond the classroom to understand and tackle the issues affecting children’s learning, such as poverty, housing and mental health.
SHS has been running for over thirty years, yet very few people have heard of the charity. Their outreach has been always restricted, since their communications team is made up of only one person, Jade Slaughter, Communications and Marketing Coordinator, who is in charge of marketing and PR. Working for a small charity with limited resources, it is important for Jade to keep up to date with the latest marketing and PR trends so that she is able to build the charity’s engagement with families and other stakeholders.
Web visitors tripled
Jade approached Media Trust for training to help improve the quality of SHS’ media and communications work. In the past year, Jade has gone on to attended Media Trust’s Content Marketing, Google AdWords and Media Interview Training open courses. The Content Marketing course has given her fresh ideas and as a result she has entirely rewritten SHS’ marketing plan. Since the Google AdWords training, Jade has been able to access the charity’s Google grant and set up a Google AdWords express account. Through SHS’ work with Google AdWords, the charity has tripled the number of web visitors received from around 2,000 to 6,000 per month.
As a result of views of SHS’ Google adverts, the charity has received an increased number of enquiries. In response to a particular Google adverts enquiry the charity has carried out a big ‘ready for school’ project in Dorset, which helps children transition from primary school to secondary school. The school employed a new SHS practitioner who works directly with children and families to help them overcome barriers to receiving an education.
Increasing our reach means that more children and families will get the support they need to thrive. Media Trust has helped us to increase that reach – its help has been vital
Jade Slaughter, Communications and Marketing Coordinator, School Home Support
Helping children reach their potential
After attending Media Interview Training delivered by Media Trust’s partner agency Weber Shandwick, Jade’s confidence was increased: “It was a fantastic course; Patrick [from Weber Shandwick] was lovely and really knowledgeable. Since the course, I’ve trained other members of staff in giving media interviews and we now have at least eight employees who are happy to take part in a media opportunity. This will be really useful in spreading the word about School-Home Support’s work”
She was also matched to a media volunteer through Media Trust’s volunteer service, who has been helping School-Home Support with email marketing. Since taking part in Media Trust’s training SHS have seen their email open rates for a recent campaign increase from 1.7% to 50%.
The biggest influence on a child’s life is their experience at home. SHS employs expert practitioners to work with families in addressing a wide range of complex issues, building their engagement and resilience so that they can resolve future issues independently. Without the necessary communications skills to reach families, children are much less likely to achieve their potential.
Jade says: “Increasing our reach means that more children and families will get the support they need to thrive. Media Trust has helped us to increase that reach – its help has been vital.”