Raising awareness of local need to support at-risk tamariki

Cholmondeley Children’s Centre.

Cholmondeley Children’s Centre.

Cholmondeley Children’s Centre recently held their first ever Little Gems Awareness Month in a bid to enhance local recognition of their brand and raise funds to support at-risk children and their whānau.

The team approached Ngātahi Communications with two key needs: to plan the roll-out of their Awareness Month communications across all channels, and to build positive media engagement that focused on the value Cholmondeley adds to the community.

With a limited budget available, our aim was to enable the team to largely implement their communications in-house. We worked to build their skills and to develop templates that would benefit the not-for-profit on an ongoing basis.

First, we held a one day workshop with key team members to map out a multi-channel communications approach and teach Cholmondeley how to do this for future events as well. We also spent time working alongside a new team member to build their skills on Facebook.

In addition, we worked with the team to develop a clear media pitch that focused on the problems Cholmondeley addresses. Our hook was the fact that Cholmondeley was in more demand than ever before as the result of a number of social factors, including the earthquakes - and we had the statistics and proof to back this story up. We also had stories about real families who had benefited from Cholmondeley’s support ready to offer exclusively to interested media. A targeted media list was developed and we then coached Cholmondeley on how to pitch to key outlets.

The story was picked up by TVNZ and we successfully gained a large feature in The Press for the local Christchurch audience. The messaging also helped Cholmondeley with several magazine features on the centre.

The team commented that this coverage was crucial in highlighting the increase in demand and the vital service Cholmondeley provides for Canterbury families in times of stress and crises. Throughout the Little Gems Awareness Month the team raised over $100,000 through a number of different fundraising events, which has enabled them to continue to support approximately 500 children and their families a year.