What makes some social campaigns succeed and others fail? Is it just having someone who is inspirational leading it, or a lot of money supporting it? None of that hurts, by any means, but the most important aspect is to involve as many different aspects of the community as possible. Why? Because, the more people and agencies who back a project and feel that is relevant and important, the more people will be informed which increases the rate of success. This support typically includes the Municipality, the Ministry of Health, and other government agencies as well as the private sector including businesses who are both directly affected and interested in the campaign. This also includes involving the education sector and the general public. When all of these sectors can be brought together to support the cause, then that cause will be more likely to succeed.
The Atenas Swim Campaign is kicking off to a strong start. To see how it is measuring up:
1) Business Support: The swim instructors in Atenas were gathered first and they will be presented to the public during the Christmas Fair the weekend of December 16, 17, and 18th. They are offering the regular classes and vacation swim classes with reduced prices for those children who are being sponsored.
2) Institutional Support: The project was presented to the Ministry of Health and then to the Municipality of Atenas. Even though this is a campaign that obviously will directly benefit the private swim instructors, the focus is on the general security of the public around sources of water and both institutions were completely supportive even giving the Municipal symbol to put on flyers. The Municipality also said that they would make the swim campaign a priority for the Sports Committee which would provide some funding in the future. The Ministry of Health feels this is an important initiative and has agreed to have a representative on the Swim Commission which will be formed in January after the holidays. There is already a specific group in the Ministry of Health formed to use sports in general as a tool to keep kids healthy and out of trouble and this initiative will fall in line with this need and also lower the risk to our children. Due to this alignment, future funding could even be possible from this collaboration.
3) Public Awareness: Flyers have been created to hand out to the public during the Christmas Fair on December 16, 17, and 18th. These flyers include general information about safety around rivers, the ocean, and pools during the Christmas break and stress the importance of learning to swim. The flyers contain the Atenas Municipality symbol and the copies were sponsored by Tristan & Newton Real Estate.
4) Private sponsorship: As the general public is being made aware of the need, 120,000 colones have already been donated to sponsor children not able to afford lessons but who wish to learn. This currently will cover 6 children in a three-week swim program during vacations and we are aiming for the ability to provide a total of 20 children in need with the lessons this January. To do this, we would need 280,000 colones more (which can be through complete sponsorship of 20,000 colones or shared sponsorship of 10,000) but it is a goal that I am sure we can reach.
5) Education: As soon as the schools are back in session in February, water safety information will be distributed there as well and the Commission will coordinate with the schools to provide presentations about water safety.
The more organizations that support a project ensure that it will be projected out to more of the public and will be better received than with only an individual effort. Since the swim campaign already has the support of 2 major public institutions, private businesses, and individuals, I have no doubt that this campaign will be an ongoing effort with far-reaching results.
To be a part of the commission and the swim campaign or to sponsor a future swimmer, please contact Tina Newton at firstname.lastname@example.org. Tina Newton and Cecilia Tristan are co-owners of Tristan & Newton Real Estate and proud sponsors of the swim campaign. They can answer all of your real estate and legal needs. Check out the website at http://www.tnrealestatecr.com and the Facebook page for listings and more information.