PR for NGO. Going global with your local actions

Polish Smog Alert is the biggest grassroots clean-air organization in Poland. With our support, they have got an interest from media such as ‘The Evening Standard’, ‘BBC News’, ‘The Times’, ‘Air Quality News’ and ‘European Interest’. How have we achieved this?

Read the Case Study and our Learnings from this campaign.

Preparation phase

Polish Smog Alert is a grassroots organization fighting against severe air pollution in Poland. Two parties were involved in this short media relations project: our Polish team, which has known the organization very well (personally), and our UK-based PR agency.

What we had at the very beginning was:

  • the organisation’s history,
  • its achievements,
  • spokespeople,
  • and their urge for immediate action.

Enough for the local media, but not the English-speaking ones…

However, the organisation could gain attention as a Finalist of the Prince William EarthShot Prize Award 2023 and we decided to use this angle.

You will also enjoy reading: Sustainable PR – supporting real eco practices or mere greenwashing? 

The pitch with a twist

The narrative, with a comprehensive and timely outlook, presented key facts and emphasized the huge potential of the Earthshot Prize.

We added an interesting twist by linking a Polish organisation with a British viewpoint. Aware that air quality matters to many British people, we contrasted and compared air quality problems, policies, and initiatives in Poland and the UK. This helped to create a cross-cultural dialogue on environmental issues and solutions. The international perspective enriched and diversified the story, making it more attractive to a wider audience.

Additionally, journalists were provided with images of the Polish Smog Alert’s main project, called the Mobile Lungs – a display of human lungs inhaling air pollution, as well as pictures showing the difference in air quality before and after the coal heating ban in Krakow—a campaign strongly supported by the Polish Smog Alert.

Polish Smog Alert campaign “See what you breathe. Change it.”

Securing interviews in media and podcasts

This necessitated precise coordination, involving communication in two languages and scheduling discussions during unconventional hours while navigating three different time zones. But this is not a problem for us- we often oversee multi-continental communication!

Media interest & Results

Top-tier media were widely interested in our pitch, including influential outlets such as ‘BBC News’ and ‘The Times. Importantly, the timing of this campaign was very limited, so some publications appeared during our collaboration, but for some, the organization needs still to wait (e.g. the interviews were scheduled or the podcast recorded, but the publication is scheduled for another month.)

When closing the 1-month project, we were able to report hits in:

Recently we performed another PR campaign for an NGO Stop Killer Robots in the US and France. We achieved publications in media such as La Tribune, MIT Technology Review, The Boston Globe and The New York Times.

If you are interested in (real!) sustainable PR or NGO PR – please contact us. We are a Clean Creatives Approved Organization which can help you achieve your communication goals.

The story was originally published on our Polish PR Agency website and written by Sophie Peck.

Sophie Peck – communication specialist with experience in the environmental/public health industry, closely collaborating with Clean Air Fund, implementing Low Emission Zones in Poland. Recently, she has been actively involved in raising awareness for the Polish Smog Alert in the UK,

As an East Initiative activist, she is enthusiastic about environmental protection and fair energy transformation. A graduate of Gdansk University, she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Oceanography with a specialization in Chemistry.

Sophie Peck
Sophie Peck

Contributor to our blog, researcher and Junior Account Executive at Enterie.


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