Week 7 – Communications and Advocacy

What is communication, advocacy and advocacy communication?

According to (Shaik 2012), communication is the exchange of messages among people for the purpose of achieving common meanings. On the other hand, advocacy is a set of targeted actions directed at decision-makers in support of a specific policy issue. Advocacy represents the strategies devised, actions taken and solutions proposed for influencing policy, laws, regulations, programmes, or funding—decisions made at the uppermost levels of public or private sector or community (Buckley 2019).

Communication and advocacy are closely linked: one cannot engage in any form of advocacy without some communication, and most communications are targeted at influencing opinions and decisions. This interrelatedness has resulted in the coinage of the term advocacy communication, intersecting both areas.

Why is communication and advocacy important?

According to Guy Kawasaki, if you are experiencing great difficulty getting support for your idea, ‘It is because you either have a piece of crap or you are not effectively communicating what you have. Both of these are your fault’. As controversial as this may sound, there is general consensus that effective communication and advocacy has the power to put you and your project on a path to significant progress.  The ability to communicate is “essential to the success of any undertaking and an important factor in the achievement of its objectives. We have entered an age of knowledge, and the key to accessing and harnessing that knowledge lies in the ability to communicate” (Shaikh, 2012). Emails, phone calls, text and video messaging, in-person conversations have become an indispensable part of not only everyday interactions but also in building a team, conceptualising our ideas, planning, fundraising, implementing and evaluating our projects, etc.

 

 

 

 

 

Your project and Communication: Ideas for communication and advocacy

1. Determine what you seek to achieve

When the need arises to communicate what you do to a customer or beneficiary etc, be mindful of what your goal is and spend some time planning on what you will communicate to get the results you envision.

2. Develop a purposeful strategy 

Depending on your project and what is needed for it to be effective, you may develop a purposeful communication strategy or plan. This strategy is drawn from your project objectives and answers the questions: who (person responsible) communicates what (message) to who (targeted audience) using which channel at what time (level of progress), why (results), how often (frequency) and to achieve what purpose (goal).https://www.teamgantt.com/blog/project-management-communication-plan 

 

3. Understand your audience 

Specify and think about your audience and what works and does not work for them. Spend time making sure you are communicating in a language they understand. As Smerdon (2014) advises: “to ensure the right people hear what you’ve got to say – and take the action you want them to take – significant work needs to be done identifying your stakeholders and the best ways to communicate with them”. Try to find common ground with your audience as it is easier to motivate someone around something they already believe in or would benefit from. For community engagements, you may want to cultivate a relationship or earn the trust of community members. Also, find out what the community wants or cares about  (community voice) when communicating to them, and if possible, try to meet them where they are rather than have them come to you.

4. Build a concise and clear message, and stick to the issue.

The most important part of communication is the message you put accross. Build a message that specifies what you want people to know, remember and/or do. People are busy going about their everyday businesses, and naturally resist or do not adjust to change easily. Your message is one of many that they have heard or will hear, so make it stand out if you want it remembered. What do you want the people hearing you to do? Are you asking for a one-time behavioural change or a long-term commitment? Are you talking to a willing audience or a sceptical one? Build a powerful message and remember that you may have to send this message a few more times or follow up to get the level of engagement or response you want.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A popular marketing model for getting your audience to act is the AIDA model developed by Elmo Lewis: make your target audience Aware of what you do, then build Interest by sharing exciting information and fuel a Desire by making them know how it’s useful for them or someone close to them, and invite them to take Action. It is worthy to note that these four areas call for a variation in the message you deliver, teaching us that getting people to act will take time – don’t be discouraged yet – and we need to cultivate a relationship over a period. Note that gaining a lot of ‘likes’ on social media, may not necessarily equate or translate to any of our followers or ‘likers’ actually changing their behaviour. We need to check our assumptions about social media engagement, and explore methods to analyse the changed being created by your approach – on the grounds.

There are plenty of examples to learn from based on what kind of communication or advocacy you are considering. In July 2016 when I started advocacy for  #increaseNSSallowa, we made a clear case and demand in our petition and were sure to not accuse, attack or condemn individuals or government because that would not only invite hostility but could also polarise the campaign into party (NPP/NDC) lines. Due to the nature of our campaign, despite the change in government and the controversies that surrounded the increment, the message persisted and the new government upheld the decision. The Right to Information Bill campaign, ‘Drop  That Chamber’ and the more current ‘Don’t tax my Period’ campaigns are good examples of advocacy and activism work in the Ghanaian context. Check out this EduSpots video on our Kalpohin project and an example of a crowdfunding campaign. You can find so many other examples online.

5. Invite feedback 

Invite feedback on your communication and develop your art. The Research Matters Programme advises that “communication is not a one-way process: we send a message to someone and that person reacts to the message received. It is important to test the effect of the message and the communication tool before finalizing it. Then you can make adjustments based on the receiver’s feedback” . You can solicit feedback from your team members, friends and relatives as well as members of your target audience. Like any art, the art of communication and advocacy can be developed over time. Speak to people who have done something similar, read wide, practice your writing and speaking, practice your speeches and get feedback before you deliver them if you can, have people read over your writings, use educational applications (for instance, I use Grammarly, Expresso to edit my writing and Elevate to improve my speaking and writing) and attend workshops near you (here is one on Public Speaking in Accra).

Channels or Methods of Communication and Advocacy

The purpose and the audience or your message should inform which option you choose to communicate. Ideas include:

  • In-person meetings (best for engaging individuals, local authorities and small groups)
  • Phone calls, video chat or conference (for communications involving remote participants)
  • Social media (Twitter posts, short videos, posters and flyers)
  • Bulk SMS (best in advocacy campaigns or marketing your service)
  • Traditional media (radio, information centre, TV, newspapers) – best for advertising or creating awareness
  • Shared to-do lists (best for keeping things going among your team)
  • Community events (festivals and other public gatherings are a good place to spread your message)
  • Electronic communications (Eg. periodic newsletters via email subscriptions, blog posts)
  • Surveys (can be considered if you need some feedback on your work)

Resources:

TASKS (Complete either task 1 or 2)

  1. Elevator Pitch Style!

Assume that someone on this course is looking for a project to support in any way possible. In 75 words or less, tell this person what difference you want to make with your project and what specific support you want. Respond to another person’s post, highlighting what you find most convincing and how it can be improved.

OR

  1. Communication Plan Mood!

Using one communication method and channel of your choice, draw a communication plan for any aspect of your project, answering the questions posed under number 2 of ‘Your project and Communication: Ideas for communication and advocacy.’

Bibliography

  1. Shaikh. Essentials of effective and interpersonal communication skills to Manage and Lead dynamic businesses with maintaining public. 2, Bhusawal : International Journal of Research in Management, 2012, Vol. 3. ISSN 2249-5908.
  2. Mehra. Guide, Advocacy and Communication: A Rough. Beppu-City : Water and Sanitation Program, 2007.
  3. Research Matters Programme. The RM Knowledge Translation Toolkit: A Resource for Researchers,. s.l. : Research Matters Programme, IDRC,.
  4. Smerdon, Xavier. Communications For Advocacy. Bro Bono Australia. [Online] Bro Bono Australia, June 2nd, 2015. [Cited: March 11th, 2020.] https://probonoaustralia.com.au/news/2015/06/communications-for-advocacy/.
  5. Advocacy versus Inquiry in communication. Interpersonal & Corporate Communication Centre. [Online] Work911.com, 2019. [Cited: 9th March 2020.] http://work911.com/communication/advocacyinquiry.htm.
  6. Buckley , Stephen. Advocacy strategies and approaches: Overview. Association for Progressive Communications. [Online] Association for Progressive Communications, October 2019. [Cited: March 11, 2020.] https://www.apc.org/en/advocacy-strategies-and-approaches-overview.

90 thoughts on Week 7 – Communications and Advocacy

  1. Task 1,
    I would like many kids in my community to know about STEM and uptake STEM Careers. For me it is important that they also learn basic computer skills like coding and hence I am looking for a coding volunteer teacher to teach with me the coding class.

    1. That’s great idea Agnes but if you could tell me more about the impact it will have and link it to the reason for needing sponsorship I would be glad. Thanks Agnes.

    2. Cool idea Agness. How would you communicate the impact more profoundly? What may happen if donors don’t support? Is your project forgoable? I am putting forward how I would personally pitch a STEM programme, so we all scrutinize and collaboratvely grow in this very important area of communication:

      “From climate change to viral pandemics, the human species faces extinction threats like never before. The role of STEM has never been more apparent- we need as many students as possible pursuing science. Unfortunately, only 6.82% of enrolled tertiary students in Ghana are in a STEM programme. Maintaining this trend means giving up on our future! Our solution tackles the problem from the roots: Making science education more interactive, practical and exciting right from the basic school level. We do this by establishing community STEM clubs where students are exposed to the fun, practical side of science, thus motivating them to pursue science at the higher level. And one unique thing about our apporach is that experiments are run using local resources, complementing standard equipment. We are seeking a grant of Ghc 50,00.00 to train volunteers and science teachers in low-cost experimentations in 2 of our pilot communities over the next 3 years. Consider this an investment to save humanity, because it is!”

      1. Nice pitch Eliasu, but they were given 75 words… I wonder if you could condense this here to see what it would look like?

      2. Brilliant pitch Eliasu. However, like Cat mentioned, we only have a limit of 75 words. I’m eager to know what you would take out of this pitch to meet the cut-off point.

    3. Because of the word limit I couldn’t really express myself, however the impact of the project will be felt mostly among students who struggle with basic computer skills as they were never exposed to such things growing up. Being a victim myself, I struggled to grasp ICT concepts in secondary school as it was all new to me. This wasn’t the situation with students who had been exposed to Computers. Also I feel simple things like that could help students get a headstart especially if they want to pursue a STEM career. It would also help spark their interest in STEM. This intern would make the students undertake STEM related course and one day solve the problems they see around them in their community.

    4. I like your idea and wish you the best and making it happen. I can sense your passion in your message. I think you may want to justify why you think young people should learn to code for example. This may help especially if your audience does not share this view strongly. In many rural areas I have worked in, the biggest educational gap is in literacy and agreeably this is a stepping stone to everything else education. How will you justify the need for this intervention?

  2. Like Agness, I twould like more youths involved in STEM, and for my project, I would like someone who can come and enlighten the youths more on STEM careers and how they could use these to solve different problems faced in their communities.

      1. So, I believe that the world is evolving. For Africa to be a significant part of this evolution, there is a need for an era where the potential of every individual is harnessed. A time where Africa moves away from being consumers of already created and well-fashioned technology into another where we invent and manufacture these technological solutions right here on the continent. With this in mind, I hope to spur the interest of the people in my country to uptake tasks that challenge them to reason and critically consider the problems to be solved in the face of many constraints, so as to come up with sustainable solutions to real-life problems. By so doing, my project will bring rise to future leaders who can reason, and critically analyze situations to come up with sustainable plans for the development of Zambia.

        1. Very insightful and on point. I believe you have in this post now communicated well your project and why it’s important.

  3. Thanks for this nice course.
    My project is helping kids and youth in my community have interest in school or education.
    Education in my community is very low because most kids and students failed to involve themselves due lack of educational materials like books,pens,tools and equipment needed in the school to enhance teaching and learning.
    Because of this,teenage pregnancy has been increased in my community and also retarded development. I and the entire community needs your support for the provision of educational materials.Thank You….

    1. Hi Kofi, I wonder whether you can tell us more specifically what change (long-term rather than short-term) will be made in your community as a result of supporting you? Feel this is important for any elevator pitch requesting funds.

      1. Hi Cat,the change will be long-term because it take will help improve the education of the people now and the next generation because some of the books will be stored in the library for many to use it and also if possible provide them with learning materials which will boast the confidence of the kids..I have two girl students who has stop schooling because of teenage pregnancy due to insufficient learning materials and not in my school only,the same problem in the rest of the other schools too.All this happen because of poverty in my community….

        1. Hello Kofi, when you say it will improve education in the community, what improvements are you looking at and who will this benefit, and why does that matter?

  4. In my part of the world, engineering is always termed as men’s field. Few women want to study and have profession in engineering. My project will be to spill the essence why engineering is for all and to encourage and motivate more females to take this field. I would need support to fund seminars and training programs for female high school students and below.
    Thanks.

    1. Hi Emmanuel,
      Great ideas, please if you could tell us more about how you intend to encourage and motivate females in the engineering field?. What kid of motivations and encouragement methods are you going to apply?

    2. Hi Emmanuel, I really like your pitch as I think most scientific fields, especially engineering are male dominated. However, don’t you think that it would be hard to change the conventional view that engineering is for male, especially in underdeveloped countries? Lots of girls may not even think of trying to do science. Could you suggest some specific ways that you would use in your project to promote girls’ interest in engineering?

  5. Hi all. I think the ideas picthed so far are inherently worthwhile. But some key things I figure would help sell your idea are credible data on the currrent problem, novelty of approach to tackling it, impact and sustainability of the idea, and exact support sought; which I think are key things that an investor would look out for to invest in, or support an idea.

  6. My project is solving the high level of bullying cases at my school. There’s high rate of verbal and physical bullying. About 90% of the bullies are students from poor background who can’t afford good school uniforms, sandals and writing books and are made fun of at school and have become factories for failure.
    I will need financial, material resources and human resources support to address this injustice.
    We will address the lack of bullying/poverty awareness and the lack of needed school materials such as uniforms, sandals or shoes, bags, and writing books of poor students
    by involving students in accessibility awareness day.
    – Incorporate an anti-bullying classes as part of the school’s curriculum and provide a framework for addressing bullies and victims. 
    -Teaching of social and emotional learning, so that student can regulate their own learning and behavior.
    -Organizing bullying awareness and effects workshop for parents, because some of the bullying cases arise from harsh parenting practices or siblings bullying at home.
    -Organize training to teachers to successful implement the anti-bullying classes.
    The project will help solve the bullying cases among students, create a conducive environment for all students to learn, promote positive behaviors among students, and improve students academic performance.
    In terms of sustainability, we will involve teachers and parents in the process and use available resources at out disposal. We will encourage the school to set clear enforceable rules around bullying since some cases are due to weak school rules and regulations.

    1. Hi Emmanuel,
      I think also experience similar problems in my jurisdiction as swell, i am really interested in combating it. Your ideas are very good and i thing we can push that forward.

    2. This is an amazing project Emmanuel! Especially because this is an area that is mostly and so easily overlooked. Working with kids, we see the everyday subtleties of bullying in and out of school. The ideas you’ve outlined to tackle the problem sounds to be effective in a school setting. It’s convincing.
      Please tell me how you hope to come up with the anti-bullying framework for the school?

      1. Thank you so much Lucky for your question.
        With the anti-bullying classes, I intend to collaborate with the school authority to allocate at least an hour per week as part of the school curriculum, where teachers can have a conversation with student around zero tolerance to bullying and teaching of social and emotional learning, so that student can regulate their own learning and behavior. Also, I intend to provide a framework for addressing bullying cases since it will have to be a gradual process. Please, I am open to more ideas to tackling this injustice

    3. This is great Emmanuel…it’s scary the kind of harm bullying can do.. every school needs to have Zero tolerance for bullying.. I have had to deal with this a few times among my students more with boys bullying girls. separate conversations driving home our values as a class and rolling out clear cut consequences helped me.

      1. Thank you so much Emefa. I really appreciate your contribution to my project and think it’s a great idea to have clear cut consequences around bullying.
        I will try that out.

    4. Hi Emmanuel, your ideas are great and will definitely make a good proposal. Thanks for sharing.

      In relation to the task, I’ll advise that you spend less time explaining the problem and what you will do, and more time on the effectiveness of your approach and the impact it promises as this is what will make your pitch stand out. Think about the questions: why will this approach work? and what does it mean for the situation?

      1. Thank you Steven for the contribution,
        My project is solving the high level of bullying cases at my school. There’s high rate of verbal and physical bullying. About 90% of the bullies are students from poor background who can’t afford good school uniforms, sandals and writing books and are made fun of at school and have become factories for failure.
        Several recent studies have shown that anti-bullying programs can reduce bullying activity by 19 to 20 percent and reduce victimization by 15 to 16 percent, Limber said.
        Experts agree that certain things make anti-bullying programs more successful, although research hasn’t conclusively identified every element that works. One key to success: setting goals that are properly communicated to the staff, students, parents and the community, in the form of an anti-bullying classes is the best activity so far in dealing with bullying.

        “You need schools to have very clear policies and procedures around bullying recognition and response,” Espelage said.
        This approach is the best solution to achieved zero tolerance to bullying as a result, it will increase students interest to school, reduce absenteeism and increase students performance.

    5. Wow. I think this is a really good initiative. Bullying is a problem almost every child faces at some point in their time in school. However I’m interested in how you’re going to introduce anti bullying classes as part of the curriculum. Do you plan on talking to like the minister of education?? Or maybe you’re only going to implement that at one school?

  7. Task 1.
    With rapid rate of growth of the world in terms science, technology, and education in general. It is prudent for everyone to get along with this system of advancement in knowledge. Education will be the best tool to make one suitable for this situation and to make one become equipped with current conditions of work. But it is very saddening that the kids in my school have no enthusiasm in education despite the need to be educated not just to secure a job but to make one stand out in whatever you do.
    It is therefore necessary to create a mindset that fuel their desire in school as a way of making them better in the future in any field they may find themselves.
    We desire to organise a community durbar, forums, kids entertainment activities that are related to education to spark their interest. We also want to establish kid education support groups where they can be meeting occasionally to assist in literacy and numeracy. We seek support in the provisions of books, cash prices (to be awarded to performers at the durbar) and support for facilitators of the education support group.

    1. Nice ideas outlined there, can you please educate us on the long term impact of your project and how it can be sustained.

      1. Hi Ishaq, thanks for the question.
        The long term impact of this is to change the mindset of the students so that they will see education as a way of making themselves better citizens, people who can contribute to national development in the future. They will see education as not only about securing a job but also to make themselves better any any field they found themselves, even if you are carpenter or a motor fitter of a Manson or a repairer. That is what we are hoping for.

        For its sustainability, we will engage the community and the school, things are going to be done by community members, they have roles to play. There is one thing that is very important; when parents and children have interest in education, things become simple, parents will be willing to provide for their kids such as books and anything that will support their ward’s education.

    2. Taurik I like that your pitch gives much information, you may want to stick to the word limit. One way to make this pitch better is to clarify why pupils are not interested in education, this will allow you to match your solution directly to the problem.

  8. The technological advancements of the world today requires advance know in technology to battle the challenges the world faces today.
    My project is dubbed “MathknowTeach”.
    Majority of students from the junior high school up-to the senior high schools and even the tertiary today feels and believe Mathematics and STEM related courses are meant for some specially born human brains. Hence no matter how best they try their best they will still not be able to understand the principles behind mathematics and that makes them reluctant to understanding its concepts.
    A little observation and study as a student and a teacher now, proves that students cannot be blamed much for their poor performances in Mathematics and STEM related courses but on the inability of some teachers who are on the majority, to use different teaching methods and techniques to explain and relate concepts to make students understand the principles and ideas behind the concepts they teach.
    Hence the project seeks to address the basic mathematics needs of students through varied methods and proven technology to harness students understanding, interest and improve their performance in mathematics.
    This will be done through coaching, students led projects, modeling of mathematics ideas into usable products and mentorship.
    This in the long term is to elevate the interest of students in STEM and improve their critical thinking skills to be able to solve problems whereever they find themselves.

    1. Hi Sumalia! This is all fascinating, but not sure if it met the 70 word brief… could you try to condense this now into a shorter version you have explained your initiative well at greater length? Imagine you only have someone’s attention for 30 seconds… what would you say?

    2. Hi Sumaila, I think the purpose of the pitch is to capture your audience’s attention in a way that moves them to action. The longer it is, the more your message is diluted and you may lose your audience’s attention.

      One way this pitch can be strengthened is to justify why any investment will get results. Why will your approach deal with the problem effectively?

  9. Task 1:

    I’m Adeline. My English and Computer literacy project, Project i-Literate is working to provide literacy resources like books and computers and opportunities through innovative interventions for underprivileged Junior High School pupils in Tamale,Ghana.

    Children have no future without strong foundational literacy. We need volunteers and support to provide access, literacy resources and library furniture.

    1. Hi Lucky, you nailed the word limit and your pitch presents a good picture of what is going on. Thanks for sharing.

      I will say you need to limit the use of general and cliched words like working (fundraising, recruiting volunteers, teaching – great if one or two words can capture it), opportunities (providing training/computer resource/books?), support (funds?), easier (practical?), as you could paint a more specific picture that helps people remember exactly what you are saying.

      Also, try to turn negative sounding sentences to promising ones. eg. Children have no (a less promising) future… – children have a better (note the use of qualifiers) future with… This claim can be made more persuasive by giving some evidence (evidence solidifies opinions into facts).

      Like I mentioned earlier with Emmanuel, your pitch should tell why this will work (because it doesn’t always work and many donors/supporters care about this) and touch on the immediate outcome and the impact.

      If you wish to you can refine this so the conversation continues. You can beat the word limit by ignoring your name and the name and place of the project

  10. Imagine a world in which everyone felt that they could catalyse the change they wanted to see in their community through the transformative power of education. EduSpots identifies ‘catalysts’ with the passion and commitment to drive community-centred change. We connect them to a network, donate sustainable kit, and offer training to them and their volunteer team, whilst educating people globally in sustainable development. Together, we can build #ourcollectivefuture.
    All feedback welcome!

  11. My Project is on enhancing computer literacy in my school. My school has a single teacher who teaches ICT for all 6 classes in the Junior High School.

    He gets overwhelmed more so because he teaches ICT in abstract. We do not have a single computer in the school. I hope to procure at least 20 computers so that the teaching and learning of ICT can be made easier. The average class size in my school is 40 so two students get to share a computer during class.

    Access and exposure to these computers will also make the teaching and learning of other subjects also very easier.

    1. Great pitch Emefa. It is really sad that students have to learn ICT without computers. And I understand the need for students to have access to them.
      How will access and exposure to these computers make the teaching and learning of other subjects easier?

    2. Good pitch – perhaps add some indication of how other teachers will support the single teacher so that the computers really will be put to the best use possible.

  12. The Metsrikasa World Changers (MCW) seeks to embark on a capacity building training for the youth of Metsrikasa community. The training will include tie and dye making, screen printing, business planning, marketing and branding. Our goal is to provide employable skills for 200 youth through this initiative.

    We would need you to support us with funding for the needed materials and engage resource persons for the skill training.

    Together we can make a change!

      1. Thanks for your feedback Emmanuel. The amount requested for the training is detailed in the budget but like you mentioned, I will do better by including the total cost in my pitch.

      1. Thanks for your question Cat.

        The short term impact of this project is to empower the youth to gain employable skills that will make them self-reliant, reorient their minds to desist from fraudulent activities and to work hard to achieve their goals.

        The long term impact is to develop Metsrikasa into a sustainable community with the youth driving systematic changes in the community. As part of the training, there would be a session on the importance of volunteering, where will instill in the youth the spirit of volunteerism and the need to give back to their community.

    1. Very great ideas there Delali…

      Honestly if I had a friend who is in your target community, I would do everything in my power to make him/her enrol in your project.

      We mostly ignore the power that we could weild as a people if we gain skills that could make us not only employable, but also set us on the path of self employment.

  13. Task 2.

    Communication Mode: Video Chat – Skype

    The goal is to give affordable and flexible tuition to mature students, as they prepare for their entrance exams.

    It would be held on Skype on weekends all year round (frequency)

    Course tutors would regulate the class.

    Target audience are working or mature students preparing to further their studies.

    1. Hi Emmanuel,
      I’m a bit confused – I think the task demands that you explain how you will use communication to further impact in your organisation, however, what you’ve mentioned seems to be the central work of the organisation itself (mentoring), rather than a communications strategy. If I’m confused, please do let me know what you meant in relation to task 2.

  14. Task 2

    Communication mod: In person meetings

    TECNHNEG teaches ICT to community youth during weekend to enable them to learn basic computing skills.

    In person meetings are held on weekend to engage the youth to ensure proper involvement of individuals.

    The purpose of this training is to help the youth meet the digital needs of the time.

    1. Hi Samuel, thanks for sharing. Why are in person meetings particularly effective for your organisation? Is this a communication method or the training itself?

  15. I believe a student with a vision will work relentlessly to achieve it with or without a teacher’s help. This is how I want my students to be.
    My project is to create an awareness and exposure for my students. Take them on excursions to educational sites, introduce them to resource personnel who started life just like them but have been able to make it through education.

    I will need assistance to fund the excursions.

    1. Hi Dorcas, I really like the opening statement – it’s powerful! I also want people to have a vision of their future – perhaps you could spell out even more clearly how the excursions link to that vision, and give a specific example of where you would take. them.

      1. Hi Cat, thanks for the remarks.
        Most of my students have not moved out of their communities before. Some of them believe life is about getting to junior high or at most senior high and then marry and give birth and start selling something. This is mostly because for some of them this is how things are in their communities. Those who are enthused about education do not have much information to guide them on the courses to offer.
        For these reasons and more the excursion will be to places such as the University where they will meet outstanding students and lecturers who will share their experiences, motivations, areas of study and careers in different fields with the students.
        I believe with these coupled with resource persons having sessions with them will help them realise that they can do more. Also this will help shape the decisions they make towards their field of studies.
        Realizing who and what they want to be, they will then set their own goals or visions to achieve them.

  16. Reading and understanding the concept of what one is reading or writing is very imperative in our contemporary society.
    I’ve over the years, resolved to change the narrative by moving street children to the class room and subsequently making them appreciate reading.
    This has inspired my community library project.
    I’m highly optimistic about the new development and how welcoming the project has been to the people.
    Systematically, we will get there.

    1. Hi Agripah. Thanks for sharing. I wonder whether you could explain further why reading is imperative in our society – what impact does this have in terms of limiting the individual. Perhaps you could also tell us more clearly how the library would make this change.

    2. I really like the last line of this, I think it’s really impactful! It’s also really good because in elevator pitches you need something that sticks with you, and I think this is it.

  17. Communication is a means of engaging one or more people in conversation for better understanding of an issue, through the fellowing. TEXT, SIGN , VERBAL.
    ADVOCACY , is. among others used as a tool in communication for and a part ocular period. Of time. these are Dialogue and lobbying . yeinning for change for a policy . introduction of newly policy.

    1. Hi Adam, thanks for sharing. I wonder if you could tell us a bit about a project you are linked to (or hoping to start) and the role of communication within that?

  18. Imagine turning on the television and seeing Ghanaian scientists finding cure to deadly diseases, or the next internet/Harry portal created by people from your neighborhood. Exciting right? I think same too and it’s possible if we turn the young generation into lifelong learners. We’re collecting used books and funds to establish community reading centers at remote places. You can support with your time, used books/ sharing the vision with others. Come on, let’s invent the future together.

    I think the message could vary depending on the audience, for example my pitch is targeting individuals from the community. I won’t use same message to international donors. Thoughts?

    1. Nice one Bashiru..
      I think a donor would want to know how the books would be taken care of.
      Do the community reading centres have rooms to keep the books that will be donated?
      Do we have to build new ones to cater for the books?

      1. Hi Stephen,
        The ideal project is to have a community library which of course will have a structure to store books. What we are doing now is using the school’s office as a temporal storage place where students carry the books in a trunk to the reading center and back everyday.

  19. The Ave-Posmonu Development Group has started a community development project involving the putting up of a block that would have a library, computer lab and training centre (for empowering women with skills like kente weaving, bead making, pottery, etc). Our goal is to raise the financial status of the women who are mostly single mothers and also provide students with learning materials to ease their learning process.

    1. You have the core details of what you are doing, but it’s not very enticing for the audience – how could you draw them in better and *feel* the importance of your valuable work? Perhaps be even clearer about the problem you are trying to solve.

  20. Task 1.
    I would like to establish a library in my community using a two building classroom. The number of BECE students who pass English language in my community is very minimal. I know very well that reading opens improves English language especially when it comes to comprehension and grammar. I would like to include reading and writing clubs which will help most students to have good grounds in English language. I have also planned to teach grammar and spelling bee which I believe will actually take the English learning to a whole different level. I would therefore like the support of a wide range of reading
    , grammar and spelling books to effectively carry out these activities. Thank you

    1. Hi Aishetu, great to hear from you. Perhaps add a personal touch to this by speaking about the impact of reading abilities upon your own life? I think you need to try to make the audience feel and see the impact even more clearly.

  21. I would start by explaining how relevant the project is a general cake. Like below which is a sensitive situation at hand:

    Dear Sir/Madam,
    Reading, writing and understanding is one area I’m very peculiar about. As common and simple as it may sound, a large percentage of students at the basic level are not able to do that which slows the rate at which students needs to be educated. Although I have helped to start working on such students, I think they need motivation. By far, being able to do practicals with computers after learning ICT tutorial is much desired as its scarce in the community. If these are made available and restrictions are made for fast readers to be assigned to designated computers, I’m sure we can kill two birds with one stone. Please support a change in these students life amidst the countless priorities on your table.
    Thank you.

    1. Hello Joseph,

      Thanks for your sharing your pitch.
      I couldn’t exactly tell what you needed support with. You greatly described the problem with reading, writing, etc., i think it would be great to focus on a specific solution for that specific problem.

    2. Hi Joseph, great to hear from you! Do you mean ‘peculiar’? Perhaps passionate? I like this, but wonder whether you could give us a vision of the long-term impact of further IT education and resources?

  22. Many children in the New Bakanta cannot read out what I am writing out or even fully articulate their views in English. Their eagerness to break out of such limitation inspired the library project that is ongoing in the community. With this library, we hope to improve the English reading, writing and speaking proficiency of students and give them access to a world outside of what they see in their community as they read. We currently require support in the form of story books, articles and magazines to stock our library. Thank you.

    1. Hi Lolo, I like this because it’s clear and concise. I also like the personal connection made with the reader through the idea that they wouldn’t even be able to read this post.
      Perhaps you could further expand on how this limits their life opportunities, or the specific offering you have as a volunteer team to ensure that the library is used effectively and inspires the youth in the process.

  23. Here’s my pitch!

    As I’m sure you’re aware, some people don’t have as high a standard of living as we do. But why should we care, I hear you ask?

    Because this is your opportunity to make a positive change in someone else’s life. Sure, we can’t change the world for everyone, but we can change someone’s world. Every pound you donate makes a small change. We can’t do much alone, but together we can make a difference.

    1. Hi Ju Yi,

      I really love how straight to the point you went with your pitch however, in so doing so left out many important details that will make the donor make a decision such as

      Who are you and how are you connected with the pitch?
      What is the problem?
      What is the solution and its impact?
      How is it innovative from others and how is that going to improve the lots of the recipients?

      Please take a look at this and come again with the pitch

  24. The differences that I wish to make during my project:

    Creativity is something that I believe should be accepted on everyone’s lives. By bringing out this side to people, it can change one person, or many people’s style and attitude towards living. It allows one to take a break from their troubles, and release their inner personality and express it. By donating, supplies can be provided to support communities, and allow them to let go and explore the world using art.

  25. Task 1

    I am a science educator in a limited resource setting. For the past seven years, no student from Avenorpeme and its surrounding villages have gone ahead to read science/ mathematics related program in the high school. We are solving this by constructing a science resource centre, one that will serve as a hub for all school related science activities. This approach is innovative because, students get to actively engage with the science content, forming their own career paths in STEM.
    The impact is getting more students to love STEM, getting excellent scores in the subject when they sit for their B.E.C.E. and increasing their options when it comes to schools and programme selection.
    Funds sourced will go into completing the facility which is currently ongoing and about 60% complete.

    1. Hello Darlington i like the fact that you are trying to stir the interest of your learners towards STEM related courses ,i will suggest you invite people in such field to have a career talk with your students as well.

  26. I have realized that most of my students can barely understand sentences and this is because their English language proficiency is poor . That is why i am appealing to you out there to help me get books for my students to read .

  27. Hi Carys, I like the conciseness of your pitch and agree that creativity is important. I would advise you to add some details of the situation in the context you are targetting. And it may be helpful to specify which supplies will be needed for what, towards which outcome and the impact – all in brief.

  28. Task 1,
    The lack of female involvement in STEM is really costing our world today. WIthout women in STEM, we are losing half of the world’s workforce. This is why we need you to help us fund The STEM summer camp launching in July 2020, in Addis Ababa Ethiopia to encourage more girls into STEM by bringing guest speakers and engaging in field trips where they can see STEM applied.
    #let’s change the world one girl at a time
    #women in STEM

  29. Elevator-style Pitch.

    My Initiative aims to empower indigent women through skill acquisition, soft loans and financial literacy.
    This will enable them become financially independent with the ability to take care of their children’s education, feeding and healthcare needs.
    We need funders to give the women loans to start up or expand small scale businesses.
    Six SDGs will be covered:
    When the women are financially empowered, this will result in no poverty, no hunger, good health well being of families, quality education for their children, gender equality as they have decent work, and will contribute to the economic growth of their communities.

  30. My project is helping disabled children by providing them with education, therapy and extra-curricular activities. There are disable children almost everywhere in the world, but some underdeveloped countries are unable to offer sufficient support to them. The aim would be to help them be self-sufficient when they become adults; for example, we could teach them to do simple tasks or help them find a job. This could not only help the children themselves but could also help to relieve pressure of their parents and the local government.

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