Body confidence and self-esteem are increasingly important topics within secondary schools, as highlighted in recent research.
In partnership with EdComs, the YMCA have launched new research on body confidence, Somebody Like Me, which surveyed 2,000 young people aged 11 to 16 and 500 teachers, reporting that:
- Almost a third (30%) of 11 to 16 year-olds isolate themselves because of body image anxiety
- More than half (52%) of 11 to 16 year-olds worry about the way they look
- More than a third (36%) were willing to do ‘whatever it takes to look good’
The research also outlined the efficacy of teaching on body confidence in schools, with more than three quarters of young people (76%) who had learnt about body confidence in school saying it made them feel more positive about themselves.
What we did
To tackle the issue, EdComs teamed up with Dove and the YMCA to create the new Body Confidence Campaign Toolkit for Schools, as part of the Be Real Campaign.
The Toolkit has been designed to help educators develop a whole-school approach to body image anxiety. It is available to all UK secondary schools to download for free.
It focuses on PSHE, PSE, Health and Wellbeing and Personal Development & Mutual Understanding. There are a variety of materials within the Toolkit designed to: train teachers; empower students; and engage parents and partners.
The Toolkit includes body confidence posters, training PowerPoint presentations, a student campaign guide and guidance for parents and guardians.
The launch of the Toolkit was supported by an email campaign to secondary schools and press releases, which generated coverage in educator and national press.
Within two weeks of launching:
- Over 650 downloads, already surpassing our target
- 55 media mentions; with a reach of 20,932,333 people
- 17 pieces of national online, broadcast or press coverage including three mentions on Good Morning Britain, the I paper, INews, PA, BT.com, BBC online, Capital Radio, Huffington Post (blog and news story)
- 11 pieces of trade press, including Premier Christian Radio, Charity Today, Teaching Personnel, Care Knowledge, SecEd and Educator Magazine,
- 400,000 reach of #BeRealSchool hashtag on Twitter, 26,000 reach on Facebook and 2,000 impressions on LinkedIn
“EdComs’ educational expertise has played a vital role in the Be Real Campaign’s work to tackle low body confidence in schools. Through their research, resource development and marketing, EdComs has helped us to create the Be Real Body Confidence Campaign Toolkit for Schools and supporting research paper, Somebody Like Me. We’re confident that these will have a significant impact in addressing low body confidence in secondary schools.”
Liam Preston, Public Affairs Manager at YMCA England and Head of the Be Real Campaign