2021: A Year of Impact

And just like that… 2021 is already coming to an end. It’s been a very eventful year, to say the least, between COP26, the historic malaria vaccine approval, COVID-19 recovery coming more into focus, and the charity sector starting to rebound – to name just a few peaks. In light of this, Skating Panda’s focus was on helping multi-sector and -sized organisations navigate the ever-changing agenda, harness their influence and turn intent into impact at the intersection of strategy, communications and culture. The team at Skating Panda has taken this moment to reflect and share a few highlights of our year… 

In 2021 we loved working with some fabulous non-profit organisations driving forward movements of change. We have always worked at the intersection of gender and health and this year was no exception with the launch of The Menopause Charity which included the release of the National Television Awards nominated Channel 4 documentary ‘Sex, Myths and The Menopause’ featuring charity ambassador Davina McCall. Our #OwnYourMenopause campaign that surrounded the launch of the charity was covered by numerous national outlets. The charity’s social media following grew exponentially and, most importantly, over 5,000 GPs signed up to receive free training gifted by The Menopause Charity within 10 days of launch. 

Diabetes is always in the news but not always type 1! We really enjoyed working with leading type 1 diabetes charity JDRF UK on their World Diabetes Day campaign. This significant date marked 100 years since the discovery of insulin, one of the greatest medical breakthroughs in history. Within 10 days of launch, our #BagsofResilience campaign had received unprecedented levels of social media engagement. On top of this, it received media interest from outlets such as The Telegraph. Find out more here. 

And our work on health didn’t stop there. While we continue to focus on Covid, we mustn’t neglect the rest. Working with two pioneering organisations, the International AIDS Society (IAS) and the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative (IAVI) we continue to capacity build and equip early career African scientists with core media and communications skills. Strong engagement was visible throughout the training programme, and participants were able to connect with organisers and each other to network effectively. 

We’ve done bucket loads with responsible businesses and accelerated impact in the corporate sphere. Our work with global tech accelerator Rakuten won gold! Yes, the Gold Award at the Internal Communications and Engagement Awards. The award acknowledged the brilliance of Rakuten’s Shift app which was designed to empower and encourage employees to make more sustainable choices. Through its partnership with the Trillion Trees organisation, the app is ensuring that hundreds of trees are planted around the world.  

Over the summer, we enabled a large global bank to change employee behaviour on waste management – a huge issue which is rarely discussed (50 million tons of electronic waste is produced every year globally!) . The campaign helped generate a positive ripple effect in the organisation and even led to the creation of an e-waste collection initiative, a change we were pleased to see in the year of the COP26 summit. 

We’ve certainly been busy. 2021 has shown us that we must keep our focus on making progress through impact, and collaboration and fostering connections is more important than ever before. Social justice, a more balanced economy and a healthy planet are the goal, and we are most certainly looking forward to bringing our passion for purpose into the new year with us.  

See you in 2022!