Charity Digital – let’s change the narrative

It has been widely publicised that within the charity sector their is a skills gap when it comes to ‘digital’. I, like a number of other digital specialist working in the sector think it’s time to change the narrative.

In response to Matt’s tweet and the following conversation with Vinny on Twitter (plus so many other chats in a number of different situations) I want to better understand the problem. Most importantly I want to understand how we can support the smallest charities that form part of the 97% of UK charities with income below £1m.

What does the term actually mean?

Before we look to define the problem and look at ways in which we might be able to come to a solution it’s vital that we define the term ‘digital’. Here’s the definition that I work to;

Digital is the connection of ideas, actions, platforms, and interactions through digital technologies.

What’s already out there?

The charity digital skills gap has been a focus of work from many brilliant organisations for quite some time. Much research to benchmark the situation has been completed. Frameworks, Matrix, Toolkits and codes have been created. But, as far as I am aware no practical training has been developed to help move the sector from knowing ‘digital’ is something they should be doing, to having the skills to.

The beginnings of my idea..

In essence my idea is to explore ways in which training can be delivered to the smallest charities and allow a ground up movement of knowledge. To date, most of the great work in this area has been led by the biggest charities and to this end digital is seen across the sector as very expensive. According to the Charity Digital Skills Report the biggest barriers for charities to further develop the way they use ‘digital’ is skills and funding, with 53% seeing skills as the biggest barrier. So, what if we could increase the skills level across the sector and remove the fear and frustration of the unknown?

Charities get involved

If you would like to help influence the development of a training platform, please take a few seconds to complete this survey.

Charity Digital Specialists

It’s not just the charities that I would like to hear from. I do not want to create anything in isolation. If you are a digital specialist working in the charity sector I’d really appreciate your involvement too (survey to come, in the meantime let’s connect on Twitter @_BobiRobson).