On Road is a charity that tackles social problems by improving media coverage of misrepresented groups and issues. The On Road team brings people together, runs events and interactions, and works with clients and communities to design projects that bring about real social change.
We take the best of what the media, digital and innovation sectors are doing and we bring that knowledge to a community, work out the most relevant and useful uses of those technologies and support the group or community to solve problems using those tools.
This charity has worked on several groundbreaking projects like Vote for Policies and All About Trans (formerly known as Trans Media Action), which explores ways to improve the portrayal of transgender people in the media.
Recent work with Clear Lines – creating a space to talk about sexual assault and consent
On Road has been awarded funding to explore ways to improve the media’s coverage of sexual abuse and for the Clear Lines Festival, we organised an expert media panel of journalists on Friday 31st of July 2015 to tackle this issue. It asked: ‘How can we improve media coverage of sexual assault and abuse?’. The panel was part of a 4-day event of theatre, film, performance, comedy and discussion, taking place in central London. The project will explore ways to improve the way the UK media talks about sexual violence, through bringing media influencers together with people whose voices are rarely heard – those who have experienced sexual violence or professionals in the field. We are working closely with individuals, activists, organisations and professionals who work in this sector to carry out media interactions, events and training from 2017-18.
Recent work with the trans community
Since 2011/12, we’ve been delivering All About Trans and Patchwork, supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and the Esmée Fairbairn Foundation (formerly BBC and Channel 4). Working closely with the trans community, we have held over 40 informal social meet-ups with over 250 media and other sector professionals across the UK, encouraging greater understanding between the transgender community and the media. We have also been working with trans filmmakers and youth on a digital storytelling project called Patchwork, showcasing stories from diverse, British trans people. A selection of these short films was released on Channel 4 in 2015 called ‘My Trans Story’. This project has also led to BBC Two’s ‘Boy Meets Girl’ the UK’s first comedy sitcom, with a trans character at its heart, starring Rebecca Root and Harry Hepple. You can read about the work at “All About Trans“.
Vote for Policies during the 2015 General Election
From January to May 2015, we supported the Vote for Policies team to help as many people as possible to get out and vote in 2015 – and make policies the focus of their voting decision. Vote for Policies (VfP) is a website that helps people decide how to vote by choosing the policies they prefer the most – without knowing which party they belong to until the end. We worked with VfP to devise a marketing campaign to reach as many people as possible with the service; working with the media, encouraging volunteers to spread the message, organising a public debate and working with a creative agency to produce a viral video. Here’s a blog about our experience.
In 2012, we delivered “Digital Undoc”, a project commissioned by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, which is looking at ways we can use digital technologies get information and support to children and young people with irregular immigration status. As part of this work we held Undoc Camp.
In 2008 we won the Catalyst Community Award for work on Media for Development’s project, “Savvy Chavvy”, a social network for young Gypsies and Travellers.
We were finalists for the 2012 Nominet Internet Awards and Technology 4 Good Awards, for our work with the Single Homeless Project (SHP), piloting the use of a mobile training centre with SHP clients to create the blog, Unheard Holler.
On Road Ltd. is a charity registered in England and Wales (1165237). We were awarded charity status in January 2016.