Weston Communicating Climate Programme

Media Trust and the Garfield Weston Foundation are delighted to be launching Weston Communicating Climate. This six-month skills programme will offer free expert-led communications training for environment and climate charities working across the UK.

Garfield Weston Foundation’s Prioritising Our Planet report highlighted that the sector is facing critical challenges when it comes to communicating the scale, complexity and urgency of the climate and environment crisis, as well as giving a voice to the most impacted individuals and communities. With the COP26 UN climate summit to be held in the UK in November and the COVID-19 crisis exposing the need for greater national and global solidarity, there has arguably never been a more important time to help enable more impactful communications around the climate crisis.

The public are not fully grasping the immediate need to safeguard our environment. It appears organisations are struggling to communicate the sheer scale and complexity of the climate and environment crisis. That’s why we’re partnering with The Media Trust to develop a programme specifically for environment charities to help them build capability and confidence with their communications, messaging and profile-raising.

Philippa Charles, Director, Garfield Weston Foundation, Prioritising Our Planet Report (November 2020).

We are looking to recruit 30 organisations to take part in the core programme and extend the power, impact and reach of their communications. Participants will enjoy access to structured strategic communications training, peer networking support, and media interview training. What’s more we will also be offering four free sector-wide communications masterclasses so even more charities can benefit!

The programme will be delivered entirely online, meaning charities across all parts of the UK will be able to have the opportunity to apply and take part.

This is a great programme if you’re working on the climate agenda and looking to bolster your capability and confidence to reframe your key messaging so it is more relevant and resonant, create cut-through content, engage with mainstream media and leverage social media influencers to amplify your voice.

Su-Mei Thompson, Media Trust CEO

Charities will benefit from:

The core programme will offer six workshops that will help charities in:

  1. Communicating complex messages clearly
  2. Growing and building audiences online
  3. Compelling storytelling – from content creation to case studies
  4. Digital fundraising
  5. Working with and supporting climate influencers
  6. Engaging the media

Media spokesperson training

Mainstream media coverage can massively boost visibility, but many people feel anxious about media interviews. This training will be co-designed and delivered with environmental and communications specialists to provide practical tips and advice for delivering effective media interviews. Each charity will be invited to nominate one member of staff for the media training.

1-2-1 strategy workshop and developing a communications action plan

Each charity will benefit from a 1-2-1 communications strategy workshop conducted by Media Trust industry partners/consultants to answer a specific communications challenge they are facing. Challenges might include how to create a media strategy, launch a global campaign or engage more effectively with supporters. They will then work with industry mentors to design a clear communications action plan to achieve their goal.

Peer networking, support and collaboration opportunities

Our charity participants will have the opportunity to network with other charities for mutual learning and support. At Media Trust, we are particularly excited about the opportunities for collaboration across our cohort of 30 charity participants, whether this is in relation to pooled research, joined up messaging, more macro impact evaluation or other collective action.

Sector-wide masterclasses

Alongside the core training for our 30 selected charities, we will hold 4 virtual sector-wide masterclasses open to any charities working on climate and environmental issues. The masterclasses will be delivered by Media Trust’s media industry partners. We are currently finalising the masterclass topics so watch this space…!

Who Should Apply?

This programme is for environment and climate charities and CIO’s registered and based in the UK.

For the full list of the eligibility criteria, please click here.

Applications for the Weston Communicating Climate programme are now closed.

Each workshop is 4 hours in total, split across two mornings.

We expect the total time commitment to be up to 8 hours a month including training, reading, homework and peer networking. We are still confirming dates for the workshops in May, June, July and September, but they will be shared with selected participants in March.

March 30 & 31 2021: Communicating complex messages using climate framing
April 27 & 29 2021: Developing a digital strategy and growing your audience online
May 2021: Compelling storytelling – from content creation to case studies
June 2021: Digital fundraising
July 2021: Working with and supporting climate influencers
September 2021: Engaging the media

Communications strategy workshops and media training sessions will take place between April 2021 – September 2021.

Additional training

Media Trust is offering free media interview training to 10 climate advocates from communities that are underrepresented in the media. There are two opportunities to take part: 25 August or 1 September. Find out more and apply here.

About our funder

The Garfield Weston Foundation is a family-founded, charitable grant-making foundation, which supports charitable excellence across the UK and last year donated over £88 million. It was established in 1958 by the Weston family and is one of the largest charitable institutions in the UK, having donated well over £1 billion to date.

It has a number of strategic partnerships across the sector in complement to its responsive and open grant-making activities and funding in the environment space is a particular area of interest.

For more information on their work across the UK please visit: www.garfieldweston.org

Get in touch

If you have any questions about the programme, please contact our Project Manager, Ceri at cerij@mediatrust.org.

Funded by:

Our Corporate Partners

We enjoy outstanding support from the media industry. Our partners include: