Frogleaps helps professionals achieve green change by providing free e-learning courses. The newest course on storytelling is now available online: www.frogleaps.org.
IUCN CEC as the first partner of Frogleaps asked for the development of this course as a tool in the CEC campaign on how to tell a love story about nature. In this campaign CEC wants to promote among conservation communicators the idea of a positive approach to the general public in which emotions play the main role instead of facts and figures.
A story is a narrative account of an event or a sequence of events. It can be true or fictional. But a good story always has a core element of truth, even if it is fiction. A story adds emotion, characters and sensory details to plain facts. That’s why a story grabs us, pulls us along its plot and delivers its key message powerfully.
Based on two surveys among CEC members and the interaction with a number of key experts on storytelling in conservation campaigns, Frits Hesselink and Peter Paul van Kempen developed the course. They use one central case to give examples of the various aspects and techniques of storytelling. A number of examples from various continents are added to show that the principles of storytelling apply in different cultural contexts:
- Our brains are built to learn from stories
- Stories grab and maintain attention; stories help to us to understand and remember messages
- Stories touch our emotions and create empathy, empathy is needed to engage target audiences for your conservation action
To give a first impetus to the CEC campaign Frogleaps already identified five CEC members from different continents willing to contribute a story of their campaign using the principles promoted in this CEC campaign: humanize, personalize and publicize nature. The challenge now is to multiply the number of such campaign stories as a CEC contribution to Aichi Target 1.