Skip to main content

Using press and local media


VSO Gulu. Vishva Sodhi, journalist, communications and information officer VSO Jenny Matthews

Media outlets in your area, from newspapers to community radio stations, are always looking for colourful stories featuring local people. You can benefit by following our top tips for working with local media.

Check out our top tips for engaging with local newspapers and radio. 

Send a press release

Anyone can issue a press release - it really is simple! Include thewhatwhenwherehow and why, especially when you are promoting an upcoming fundraising event. A journalist is much more likely to use your story if you have included all the details they need first time.

To make things really easy, we have a number of templates available to use, please get in touch and we will find the right one for you. 

Offer photos

A story with photos is miles more interesting that one without – it brings you and your cause to life. When it comes to local and national press, it helps if these are good quality, framed well and tell a story.

Wacky fundraisers like bathing in bathtubs of beans can offer a funny image and the opportunity for a striking headline – think about what you can do to make your fundraiser media-friendly.

Don’t be afraid to follow up

Once you have submitted a press release and photos over email, feel free to follow up afterwards with a phone call to the news desk asking whether there is anything else you can offer to support the story.

Share any coverage you get

If your fundraising gets local press coverage, congratulations! Share the digital versions of the articles, or photos of the originals on your JustGiving page and on your social networks.

Sometimes external coverage can confer extra legitimacy to your cause and you may see a new wave of donations from your networks.

Ask for a shout out

Why not email or phone in to your local radio station and see whether the presenters can offer a free plug for your event or fundraising? This could be especially useful on the day of an event when you are offering a local tip for something happening in the area.

Offer yourself as an interviewee

When getting in touch with a radio station, explain what you are doing and let them know that you are happy to talk about it on air. This is a great opportunity to get free publicity, personalise your cause and a chance for you to talk about why you are fundraising in your own words

VSO fundraising team hard at work

Need some help? Get in touch!

Telephone: +44 (0)20 8780 7500

Email: events@vsoint.org