Midlothian Voluntary Action
Charity registered in Scotland SC008286
- Award: £10,000 via Call 1
The project will up-skill community groups, community council members, self-help groups, faith organisations, and anchor organisations to support people with little or no experience to access the internet. We will focus on supporting organisations to be confident in discussing basic online skills for individuals e.g. send/receive e-mails, use search engine, identify spam etc, and supporting their members/clients to gain these skills by embedding the activity in their regular work.
Development Phase 1: April - June 2015
April 1st - gave training to 9 staff at Melville Housing Association in Dalkeith
April 7th - gave training to 8 staff at The Bridges Project in Musselburgh
April 22nd - gave training to 12 third sector workers on the capabilities and possibilities of smartphones
April 23rd - gave training to 6 staff at The Association for Real Change in Dalkeith
May 5th - gave training to 15 staff at The Orchard Centre (Health in Mind) in Bonnyrigg
May 19th - sent email to 445 organisations in Midlothian promoting the project: Online Version:
June 17th - Awareness raising with 12 members of the Federation of Community Councils in Midlothian
June 22nd - Awareness raising with 10 members of the Children and Young People’s sub group of the Midlothian Voluntary Sector Forum.
Development Phase 2: July - September 2015
July 2nd - sent email to 434 organisations in Midlothian promoting the project: Online Version:
July 20th - Digital Inclusion training with 8 staff members from Intowork
July 28th - Digital Inclusion training with 3 staff members from Midlothian Libraries
July 29th - Digital Inclusion training with 4 staff members from Midlothian Libraries. Training was featured in Midlothian’s council’s magazine.
September 15th - sent email to 433 organisations in Midlothian promoting the project: Online Version: https://us6.campaign-archive.com/?u=80f4363fd5fef419efb977c50&id=faf312b602
Concluding Phase: October - December 2015
October 8th - sent email to 421 organisations in Midlothian promoting the project: Online Version:
October 13th - Stall at Penicuik Library promoting the benefits of internet access for Get Online Week: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23GOLW15&src=typd
October 15th - Stall at Newtongrange Library promoting the benefits of internet access for Get Online Week: https://twitter.com/search?q=%23GOLW15&src=typd
October 27th - Digital Inclusion training with 4 staff members from Midlothian Libraries
October 29th - Digital Inclusion training with 11 staff members and volunteers from Health in Mind’s Midlothian Befriending programme.
Feedback on this training: “I wanted to thank you so much for coming along to our Fireside tonight. 9 volunteers is the most we have had at a Fireside all year so they must have been very interested the topic and feedback afterwards was very good - so thank you again!”
November 3rd - Digital Inclusion training with 5 staff from Midlothian Libraries
November 3rd - Digital Inclusion training with 11 staff from Loanhead After School Club
November 17th - Digital Inclusion training for 3 people at MVA
November 24th - Digital Inclusion training for 11 staff from Midlothian Sure Start
January 20th - Social Media training day for 14 staff from various third sector organisations across Midlothian
February 2nd - One to One Consultation with advocacy service CAPS on using digital tools to help their clients
February 4th - Digital inclusion training with 10 volunteers from Health in Mind
February 8th - Digital consultancy with 1 staff and 1 board member from PASDA (Parents of Autism Spectrum Disorder Adults)
Overall this project: Achieved its aims. We trained 159 people from 62 organisations after planning to train 43 organisations.
In terms of outputs we delivered: A non-time intensive training session and learner’s guide to Basic Digital Skills that allowed front line staff and volunteers to upskill their clients and service users. Upskilling of staff’s own Basic Digital Skills.
In terms of outcomes for the people and groups we care about, this project has: Given frontline staff and volunteers the skills and resources they need to give their clients basic digital skills. We know this from feedback from the organisations:
"There were items that I did not know about using the email etc. that I now use in my life. I currently do not have a match so cannot comment on clients."
"Got me thinking about the possibilities of the Internet."
"We are a kind of third party in this case, we do not have clients of our own, but are trainers and assessors of social care qualifications. It was certainly useful to us personally and our intention is to advise staff we train and assess."
"It was a really useful training session. The volunteers fed back that they were much more confident about introducing their clients to technology and the internet. It was delivered at exactly the right pace and all the questions were answered well and with assurance."
Things that worked well:
Short (40 minute) training sessions delivered after staff or volunteer meetings
Getting staff to change their own online usage.
Explaining the cloud was a major hook for staff and volunteers, feedback was many of them started using it themselves.
Things that we would do differently next time:
Improve the promotion – the concept of upskilling was difficult to explain