Inspirational talks and speakers at Charity Writing and Communications Training Days


How we…create an effective member magazine

Eleanor Wheeler, content manager, and Gregory Cranness, membership officer

National Autistic Society

The National Autistic Society’s award-winning Your Autism magazine features advice, true stories, expert research and information, covering all the everyday issues autistic people and their families face. It also includes interviews with autistic celebrities, professionals, families and other members of the autism community.

In this session, the magazine’s editor Eleanor Wheeler and membership officer Gregory Cranness will talk about the approach the charity takes to its magazine and what makes it award-winning. Plus, tips for creating a great magazine for your own organisation.

How we…produced an award-winning annual review

Mel Barry, head of marketing and communications

Keech Hospice Care

It’s something every charity has to produce, but how do you make your annual review brilliant?

Keech Hospice Care’s ‘A story like no other’ won Third Sector’s award for best annual review in 2015.

The publication is simple, brief and powerful, and accompanied by an animation film to work across social media, which presents the review in a clear and entertaining way.

In this session, Mel Barry will discuss where the idea for ‘A story like no other’ came from, how Keech put it together, and give top tips for your next annual review.

How we…moved our magazine from print to online

Hannah Adams, NB Online editor


Printed publications vs publishing online. It’s a dilemma many charities face.

In 2015, RNIB made the call to move their NB magazine, which is almost 100 years old and for eye health and sight loss professionals, to an entirely digital format.

In this session, editor Hannah Adams will explain why the charity made this decision, how the team puts together an engaging online magazine, and give advice if you’re looking to do similar.

How we…wrote an award-winning resource for carers of people with Motor Neurone Disease (MND)

Kaye Stevens, care information manager

MND Association

Clear. Innovative. Warm. Engaging.

The MND Association’s Caring and MND booklet is all these things and more. That’s why it won a prestigious British Medical Association Patient Information Award in September 2016.

Come to this session to find out how the organisation put together the publication, what made it award-winning, and what you can learn about putting together great health (and other) information for your charity.

How to…get the people you help involved with your photography and storytelling

Being authentic in your storytelling is crucial to making it powerful.

PhotoVoice designs and delivers tailor-made participatory photography, digital storytelling and self-advocacy projects for socially excluded groups.

Kate Watson will talk about how participatory photography can be harnessed as a tool for advocacy and communications, giving the people and communities that organisations support the opportunity to represent themselves to wider audiences.

Drawing on examples of PhotoVoice’s latest projects, the workshop will explore the ethical use of photography in the charity sector and the possibilities of photography for wider social change.

Speaker: Kate Watson, projects manager, PhotoVoice

How to…be brilliant at blogging

Richard Sved, director

3rd Sector Mission Control

Blogging. It’s something we should all be doing, right? But what is good blogging? And how can you create a great blog for your charity?

In this session, Richard will talk about what makes his own blog on the third sector so successful – from keeping it personal to sharing on social media – and share some great blogging tips you can take back to your charity.


How we…nailed our tone of voice

Nicola Sewell, brand, content and creative manager

World Vision UK

Infusing your communications with the right tone of voice can help you reach and inspire all the right audiences to achieve your charity’s aims.

Last year World Vision UK worked hard to develop an effective new tone of voice to appeal to their wide range of audiences, from child sponsors and church leaders to civil servants.

In this session Nicola Sewell will explain how the organisation went about redeveloping its tone of voice, the benefits it has brought to the charity – and give some top tips if you’re looking to refresh your language.

How the big organisations use science to gain money and attention (and you can too)

Toby Blume, co-founder

Social Engine

While we would like to think we’re all rationale creatures, the evidence would suggest otherwise. Deep-rooted psychological biases affect our behaviour every single day. Commercial organisations have been onto this for years with inventive ways to engage us emotionally and financially.

But how can charities begin to harness some of the secrets of the brain to produce more effective communications and fundraising in this competitive world?

Come to this session to hear how some simple changes to your approach can affect how people react to your messages and the success of your charity.

How we…involve the people we help in our digital work

How can you really know your communications work is good? Getting the opinions of the people you help – and getting them involved in creating it – is a sure-fire way to make sure it meets their needs.

In this session, Amy Burton will discuss how Diabetes UK involves its audience in its digital work, from encouraging young people to create their own videos about how to manage type 1 diabetes to involving beneficiaries in influencing and reporting back on professional conferences.

Speaker: Amy J Burton, digital engagement manager, Diabetes UK