BC Green Guide #5: Creating An Effective Awareness Campaign

Two motivating reasons to carry out green action projects are sharing your success with your community and inspiring change in others. Doing a project in your classroom is great, but sharing what you learned with others and showing them how they can do it too, is just as important when it comes to making lasting sustainable change.

 

Start by sharing what you learned with the rest of your class, other classes in your school or the entire school. Then share outside the school with family, community members, neighboring schools and so on. Think about how can you grow your project and involve more people. There are many ways of effectively sharing what you did, getting the word out and inspiring more change.

 

Tell the story of what you did, why you did it and the impact it had. This is a great way to engage others and share your project with them in a creative and inspirational way. Positive stories with positive impact can gain a lot of momentum. So, what are some effective ways to run an awareness campaign and communicate the story of your action project? Read on for some helpful tips.

 

7 tips for a successful green action project

 

  1. Do your research

 

Start by doing your research and making sure your facts are correct. See if there are other organizations doing similar projects that you might be able to connect and collaborate with. It can be very valuable to help support related causes rather than starting something similar from the ground up. There’s nothing wrong with participating in already existing awareness campaigns in your school like World Cleanup Day, Waste Reduction Week, National Sweater Day, Earth Day, Bike to School Week, and so on. Chat with experts already involved in your topic area to work towards becoming an expert yourself. Knowing what you are talking about and why it’s important provides a good base to start any action project. Check out previous blogs on habitat stewardship, zero waste, gardening and composting, and carbon emissions for some background information and links to related resources!

 

  1. Outline your purpose and goals

 

Be clear and concise about what you want people to take away from your awareness campaign or event. Make sure messaging and any call to action is clear. What are the dates, location, action you want from people? Determine what type of campaign or event you want to run. It could be an educational event, community volunteer event, fundraiser, climate strike, encouraging people to drive less or use less water, and so on. There is no limit to what it could be; just ensure your team has a clear plan and specific goals you want to reach, as well as ways to measure its success.

 

  1. Determine your audience

 

Knowing who you want to participate will help determine how you advertise your campaign or event. It could be other students at your school or the entire world! Maybe it’s youth or families or everyone. Deciding this will help focus the next steps in your campaign to ensure the information gets to the right people. Maybe it will be as simple as making a school-wide announcement, reaching out to the local paper or posting on social media. This will help ensure your campaign or event will be successful.

 

  1. Create a timeline

 

Pick a date for your campaign or event then create a timeline of things your Green Team needs to get done beforehand in order for it to be a success. Know what you are doing when and who is responsible for what. Maybe you are organizing a one-day beach cleanup, a Bike to School Week or you want people to bring in used batteries to recycle. You will need to decide when to start advertising what is going to happen and share why it’s important for people to participate.

 

  1. Get the word out

 

Next, design some collateral material to help get the word out. It could be as simple as a school-wide announcement or a press release for the local newspaper. Below are some potential ways to promote your campaign/event/project:

 

  • School announcements
  • School newsletters
  • Gym assembly/class presentations
  • E-mail*
  • Social media posts*
  • Word of mouth
  • Posters
  • Brochures
  • Meetings
  • Local newspaper à media release template
  • Blogs
  • Videos
  • A website
  • Games, puzzles, quizzes, contests
  • Info sheet handout
  • Swag to hand out

 

*Note: check with your teacher about school policies before sharing online.

 

  1. Make it happen

 

Now that all the planning is done, it’s time to put things into motion. Remember to document everything and take pictures and/or video along the way!

 

  1. Record and reflect

 

It is always valuable to reflect on how things went and record what you did so someone else could easily do it again. Take some time with your Green Team to think about what went well, what didn’t, and what you would do differently next time. Did you meet your purpose and goals? How much of an impact did your project make? Write it all down, then celebrate your success!

 

If you found this helpful read our next blog on telling the story of your project!

 

Curriculum Connections

(in addition to any connections to specific project topics):

  • Stories and other texts can be shared through pictures and words (K)
  • Curiosity and wonder lead us to new discoveries about ourselves and the world around us (K)
  • Our rights, roles and responsibilities are important for building strong communities (1)
  • Dance, drama, music and visual arts are each a unique language for creating and communicating (2)
  • Local actions have global consequences and global actions have local consequences (2)
  • Individuals have rights and responsibilities as global citizens (2)
  • The choice of technology and tools depends on the task (4/5)
  • Media sources can both positively and negatively affect our understanding of important events and issues (6)
  • Social, ethical and sustainability considerations impact design and decision making (10)
  • Ethical marketing contributes to a healthier global marketplace (10)
  • Multi-stage design projects benefit from collaborative work environments (10)
  • Marketing services and products can be designed through consultation and collaboration (11)
  • The design cycle is an ongoing reflective process (11)
  • Design for the life cycle includes consideration of social and environmental impacts (11)
  • Design and content can influence the lives of others (11)
  • And more!