With social media comes more creative ways to bring awareness to issues we care about, and organizations have been doing just that.
Social media has been a really effective way for organizations and brands to market in a completely different, and interactive, way. It can bring attention to issues that need monetary donations, volunteers or further action. Of course, there is still a need for action offline, and it’s important not to just be vocal on social media about whatever topic you’re passionate about, but it can be a great start!
One great example of how social media brought a group of teenagers together is Zero Hour, a youth-led movement that’s putting young people’s voices in the middle of conversations about climate change. This group of climate-minded teens got their start last year organizing on social media and turned into a way to get adults’ attention by saying that what young people want is more climate- and environment-focused policies. The story I linked to in the first sentence of this paragraph goes more in-depth about the young voices behind the project and their visions for the future.
There was also the #10yearchallenge, which originally started as a way for people to post old photos alongside newer, better looking photos to see how far they’ve come in the last ten years. But quickly, the hashtag turned into photos ten years apart, taken in the same area, to show the drastic changes that have been caused by deforestation and other tragedies. This social media campaign in particular was a powerful one to me. Seeing how quickly one specific place can change in ten years was not just frightening, but heartbreaking, too.
World Wildlife Fund, another example, is good at social media. This is from 2015, but I still love the idea. There are 17 “emoji animals” that are endangered, and for every emoji included in a tweet, a small amount of money would be donated. To learn more, click here.
WWF also have two popular hashtags going on right now: #StopPlasticPollution and #SaveYourParadise. #SaveYourParadise refers to the oil drilling in Greece in the Ionian Sea and #StopPlasticPollution refers to their online petition to ask the world’s governments to take action on reducing our plastic use by 2030. Sign the petition here, if you want!
Since WWF has been around for a long time and gets a high level of respect from most other organizations and countries, it can pull a lot of weight when supporting or not supporting an issue. And since they have so many people who look to WWF to be one of the world’s leading sources on climate change and other environmental issues, they have a lot of power, and I feel their power on social media has just started to scratch the surface.
As climate change becomes more of an issue, I think people will turn to social media more to bring awareness and call for action. And like the kids organized online for Zero Hour, I hope we’ll see more of that in the future.