This week the Science and Media Centre gathered journalists, doctors and scientists – as well as a few media officers and communicators – in a room to try and improve understanding of each other’s roles…
Devise and implement a communications campaign for the NSPCC that would help change parent child-shaking behaviour, helping to prevent the serious injury or child death that can occur as a result.
- Raise awareness of the vulnerability of babies and their need for careful treatment
- Create recognition of the early signs that a baby is at risk
- Encourage parents under stress to ask for help
- Provide a pilot model for planning and implementation of a behaviour-change campaign
How we did it?
Many child protection awareness-raising campaigns rely on shock to get the message across. It was felt that in this campaign, while important to stress the severity of the problem, should engage with the target audience and empower them to take the next step.
The relative size different between an adult and a child is the major reason why babies are so vulnerable. In considering the size difference, we approached the Saints rugby team to work with us on the campaign. An image of them with a child would explain visually and with impact the campaign key message.
The Saints rugby team modelled for the poster campaign and participated in a press event to launch the campaign. A package of media-content including research, case studies and spokesperson comment was developed to ensure sustain media coverage.
In addition, a multi-agency conference was held to promote understanding of the signs and symptoms.