Through the web portal www.breakingscience.be and the corresponding Facebook page, Co-valent is successfully engaging with growing numbers of young people on topics and facts about chemistry, plastics and life sciences. Light and amusing posts on Facebook as well as longer articles on the website connect the industry with the world inhabited by young people today, making chemistry – and science in general – accessible and trendy. This successful project fits perfectly with the objectives of the government’s STEM action plan.
Several changes to the website and ways of posting items on Facebook have resulted in an increase in the number of followers on Facebook to 3,400 youngsters and a 42% increase in visits to the website since January 2015. Girls accounts for 37% of Facebook followers and website users and boys 63%, 51% are Dutch-speaking and 37% French-speaking, and most are aged between 12 and 24 years.
By partnering with organisations with strong connections to the world of schools and teachers, Breaking Science has become better known among students. Facebook posts by industrial partners addressed to young people (Talentenfabriek, essenscia, HaaiTech!…) are being shared and thus reach large numbers of followers. The most-visited website page is the one which explains different professions within the industry.