Build support for your campaigns by getting people to add their voice

Campaigners

A petition, postcard action or letter-writing campaign is a useful way to show that lots of people are concerned about the issue.

The more people who sign a petition or complete a postcard action, the more impact the campaign can have. It’s also a great way of talking to people about an issue, raising their awareness – and hopefully motivating them to get involved too!

Writing a petition

A petition is a statement about an issue that’s addressed to your target, and has supporting signatures attached to it.

It includes:

  • A clear statement about the issue with what action you want the target to take.
  • The name, address, and signature of each person who signs it.
  • A tick box, so people can opt-in to further contact.
  • A data protection statement – this is a legal requirement so it’s important you include it at the bottom of each page.

Download this guide to see an example petition template. 

Online

Spreading a campaign action through social media or email allows people to act fast.

Our campaigns will often have a campaign action you take online (like writing to your MP) and that you can share with friends and family.

You can also look at websites like change.org or 38degrees for ideas, inspiration and online tools.

Getting supporters

1. Set a goal

Setting a target for how many signatures you want to collect, or letters you want to send, helps with motivation and makes it easier to show others that their signature will make an impact.

If you reach your target – celebrate! And then set a new target.

2. Spread the word

You have all kinds of contacts in your daily life that you could approach about a campaign action, which can make a huge impact in reaching your target.

Have a session to identify people or groups you could approach in person or online.

The Children’s Society has shops across the country that promote our campaigns by asking customers to take campaign actions. There may also be other shops in your area who would help promote the campaign.

3. Get creative

Asking people to make something can be a fun way of engaging them in your action.

So instead of asking people to sign something, you could ask them to:

  • Use paint to make their handprint on paper or cloth and sign their name on that, or draw around their hand with pen.
  • Make a paper flower and attach a tag with their name on it.
  • Design a patchwork square – then collect them all and turn it into an eye-catching quilt.
  • Draw a self-portrait.

These are just suggestions – we are sure you will have your own brilliant ideas!

4. Handing it in

At The Children’s Society, we collect in petitions and postcard actions from around the country and organise local and national hand-ins.

We always try to do this in a way that the media will want to cover – it’s a nice way to make sure those who signed the petition feel good they were involved when they read about it in the paper.

Download this guide