The Sheila McKechnie Foundation is the UK’s leading provider of training and support to those seeking to bring about positive social change. We act as a powerful voice for this community, and celebrate excellence through our National Campaigner Awards.

Training & Consultancy

We deliver a wide range of training including one-day campaign workshops and our five-day Influencing Change course, plus intensive masterclasses.

  • Bringing together thoughts into a deliverable campaign strategy workshop has been really helpful. Also, setting out all the elements of a campaign and understanding what aims are realistic. Fantastic training programme!

    1-Day Workshop, Manchester
  • I have a much better understanding of the full process of planning and delivering a campaign, being completely new to a campaigning role this has been invaluable. The varied programme that was tailored to the needs of the attendees was really beneficial to my development. Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this excellent training.

    5-Day Workshop
  • Really thorough overview - good content, and not too daunting. Made me feel ‘’Yes, I can do this!’’

    1-Day Workshop, London
  • I believe my ability to influence different audiences has increased a lot, and allowed me to be more confident in approaching politicians and media.

    5-Day Workshop
  • The skills have equipped me with growing confidence to challenge decision makers failing the community and question what would be the best tool or skills essential for a desired effect/outcome instead of the old passive predicted routine.

    5-Day Workshop
  • Really brilliant course overall – feel lucky to have been a part of it. I really appreciated the pace of the course – having the days spread out worked really well and have time to digest everything. John is also a really great trainer and I feel he tailored the course to our needs.

    5-Day Workshop
  • It was lovely to meet other organisations and make connections with people who are passionate about campaigning and making a difference.

    5-Day Workshop
  • In the time since I started the course, I have successfully executed – and won – a campaign to overturn a government decision.

    5-Day Workshop
  • The programme has inspired me to do more networking with other campaigners! The course has given me such a good foundation of knowledge – especially for someone who is relatively new to campaigning.

    5-Day Workshop
  • Since taking part in the programme, we have gained significant media coverage for our campaign which saw much more political and public interest in the matter.

    5-Day Workshop
  • I’ve got some practical actions that I’m going to go home and get on with!

    1-Day Workshop, Bristol
  • The day has given me a good grounding in what is required to get started with my campaign.

    1-Day Workshop, London

Upcoming Training

Masterclass – Getting Your Voice Heard

18th January 2018: 14.00-17:00


Thought Leadership

We work to ensure the public and policy environment for campaigning is appropriate, and undertakes research to inform thinking and practise in campaigning and social change.

We work in collaboration with all those interested in campaigning and social change and seek to act as a positive voice for this community.

The Social Change Project

The Social Change Project is a 15 month initiative led by SMK to address the one question everyone in civil society should be constantly asking – how do you truly create change?

  • I’m such an admirer of the work of the Sheila McKechnie Foundation – really inspirational work – and so important to remember that all of us have it within our gift to contribute to making the world a better place. Our Fair Funerals campaign staff members have both learned a lot from your work.

    Judith Moran, Director, Quaker Social Action
  • It’s been invaluable to have SMK involved in the work of the Charity Operating Environment group. They’ve ensured we’ve been able to reflect the views of grassroots campaigners as well as provided strategic insight into how best to influence government on this important agenda.

    Tom Baker, Head of Campaigns and Engagement, Bond
  • There is now recognition at board level and from our members that campaigning needs to be central to what we do now and in the future.

    Catherine Harrington, Director, Community Land Trust Network

Connecting & Celebrating

We bring together the campaign community and celebrate success. Learn more about our events, including the National Campaigner Awards and People Power conference.

Latest Events

National Campaigner Awards 2018 

Do you know someone or an organisation who you think deserves to be celebrated for their campaigning? Nominations for our National Campaigner Awards 2018 are now live!

  • Winning the SMK Award for Environmental Justice has been an important landmark in my career as a campaigner, as well as for my organisation, City to Sea. I'm personally very proud to have won the award and feel it's been very significant.

    Natalie Fee, City to Sea, Environmental Justice Award winner 2017
  • Professionally, being able to say I'm an 'award winning campaigner' really helps me have more credibility in what I do. Personally, it has given me more confidence to spread my 'gentle protest' approach to activism and craftivism and it really encourages me when I'm tired or doubting the impact we are having (activism is hard to measure as we all know!).

    Sarah Corbett, Craftivism, Economic Justice Award winner 2017
  • The award really supported our case to get another year’s funding for our work and we have been training other young women in the North East to act as Domestic Abuse Champions in their schools and colleges and to reach as many young people as possible.

    Laura Christer and Sophie Murtha, Domestic Violence Peer Education Champions, Gender Equality Award winners 2016
  • It has been inspiring and a boost to us. To know organizations, such as SMK and the sponsors, care about giving us, the people, a voice is amazing. To help enable people to campaign effectively and speak up for what they believe in, whether it be environmental justice or other worthwhile cause, is a fundamental human right.

    Barbara Richardson, Frack Free Lancashire, Environmental Justice Award winner 2016
  • Winning the award for our Inside Out Campaign has not only filled our staff and supporters with a great deal of pride but it gives gravitas to the message we are trying to spread through the campaign. Our Inside Out campaign is ongoing and being able to now promote it as a Sheila McKechnie Foundation National Award Winner gives it real kudos. Thank you so much for your support.  

    Shirley Smith, Inside Out, Health Award winner 2016
  • Receiving the SMK Campaigners Award for Transport gave my campaign (#LondonBusWatch) a significant morale boost at a critical time.  Although none of us campaigners do what we do for recognition, to find myself in the company of such an accomplished and energetic group of activists was both inspiring and gratifying.  

    Tom Kearney, London Bus Watch, Transport Award winner 2016


We’re leading the way for campaigning and we want you to join us

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