The Media Federation of Australia (MFA) has launched the 2019 NGEN Award, as part of the revamped MFA Awards, calling on the industry’s future leaders to develop a communications plan for youth charity BackTrack.
The NGEN Award is one of 17 entered categories at this year’s MFA Awards and is designed to develop the skills and recognise the talent of young media agency executives with less than five years’ experience. The MFA Awards charity partner UnLtd nominated BackTrack as the 2019 charity.
NGENers are invited to respond to a brief (available on the MFA website), calling for an FY20 communications plan to increase the total value of donations to BackTrack, in order to fund the expansion of the BackTrack model into new markets, including regional areas Australia-wide.
BackTrack is a not-for-profit organisation helping kids who are doing it tough to get back on track. The young people BackTrack works with are mostly from rural areas and aged between 12 and 18, facing challenges in education, health, justice, housing and employment.
They’re the five per cent of kids that society has given up on. BackTrack’s aim is to keep them alive, keep them out of jail, and help them chase their hopes and dreams.
The NGEN Award gives NGENers the opportunity to create positive impact by using their core skills: strategic thinking, creativity, storytelling and media execution expertise.
Previous winning entries have gone on to make significant impact for participating charity partners, such as John Dawson’s winning ‘Lace it up’ entry for Youth Off The Streets in 2014. Using distinctive blue laces to symbolise the reality of homeless youth sleeping with their shoes on, for fear they may be stolen, ‘Lace it up’ reached more than 1.4 million Australians through earned media. Best of all, the campaign resulted in a 112% increase in donations to Youth Off The Streets.
The 2017 winning entry from Nolan Yu and Max Learmont resulted in the creation of world-first virtual mentoring world for deaf teenagers inside Minecraft, called ‘League of Hearoes’, in response to a brief from Hear For You.
In the words of a previous NGEN Award winner, ex-MediaCom digital account senior executive William Berner: “The entire MFA NGEN journey, from entering to winning, was awesome. The opportunity to respond to the NGEN brief allows you to use your skills for something truly positive and good.
“In truth, responding to the brief is such a great way of developing your overall media knowledge, and allows you to explore your own creativity.”
MFA CEO Sophie Madden said: “Over the years, the NGEN Award has produced some wonderful work for deserving Australian charities as well as giving young media executives the opportunity to develop their existing skill sets and challenge themselves against their peers. I can’t wait to see what our industry’s best and brightest recommend for BackTrack. I’m sure it will be a tough competition as always.”
NGEN Award entrants must be a registered member of NGEN with less than five years’ experience, and currently working for a media communications agency or media industry supplier.