DataKind UK along with its Datawise London partners and other networks is providing vital support during Covid 19.
Here Dulcie Vousden, Data Science Lead, summarises the data, technology and digital support for charities and community organisations across London.
Many charities face a huge change in their operations at present and need to re-prioritise their efforts.
Organisations are having to quickly adapt to new technologies and ways of working, while also adjusting to sudden changes in staffing and funding.
At the same time, many organisations are trying to understand how the needs of their beneficiaries might be changing at this time.
If you have been asking yourself:
- How can we move our meetings and workshops online?
- How can we determine who among our clients might be digitally excluded?
- How can we collect data on how this is impacting our clients?
You are not alone! We have been hearing these questions from charities big and small - and indeed, we’ve recently had to adapt our own events to operate virtually!
However, we would suggest that you be patient with yourselves as your organisation adapts to this crisis! And know that there are people who can help you.
With that in mind, here is a short overview of the support available within London.
Data support from Datawise London partners
Office Hours - DataKind UK
If you have a question about how to make use of the data you have, or how to go about getting the data you are missing, consider making an appointment for DataKind UK’s Office Hours.
During Office Hours, any social change organisation (based anywhere in the UK) can drop by and talk to a data expert for an hour, whether their issue is operational or strategic, well-formed or speculative. Examples of types of questions include:
- What data should we collect to make data-driven decisions in our organisation?
- How can we collect data on the outcomes of our clients?
- What do we need to think about to make sure we use data responsibly, respecting individual privacy and GDPR?
- How can I supplement our data with freely available open datasets?
These sessions are offered remotely on the first Wednesday of every month.However, understanding that data demands may emerge at any time, more urgent appointments are available too!
Book your spot here.
Free webinars and 1:1 impact advice - Coalition for Efficiency
Coalition for Efficiency is offering the following to any small charity and social enterprise that might benefit.
Free access to online Learning Labs: (these will be also be uploaded to our Youtube page which will be available shortly)
- Measuring the Good Learning Lab series: covering impact practice related subjects
- Agile for Good Learning Lab series: covering agile working practices, especially in times of crisis
Impact Chats: 1-1 online session to discuss the implications of Covid-19 on their existing impact management approach and how they might adapt it.Coalition for Efficiency will provide direct support where they can and signpost to useful resources.
Datawise London training
Join a series of free webinars to better use data to shape service delivery. Topics include data essentials, mapping your data, interviewing your beneficiaries, Excel and creating simple dashboards.
Submit your data hunch
Do you know what's working and not working in the services and activities you offer to your beneficiaries? How would you prove it? If you have an idea but aren't sure if you're analysing your information correctly, or which external data sources might back up what you think - our Datawise London partners can help.
Privacy and security
Finally, with many small community groups beginning to collect data, there is a lot of confusion about data collection, GDPR, and privacy. The ICO has offered some guidance and security tips as has the NCVO. We encourage you to make responsible data use an open conversation and to get in touch if you have doubts or questions.
Digital and tech support
Not all problems are data problems! Is your organisation asking ‘How can we go from in-person to digital delivery?’
If so, have a look at this guide from SCVO, which highlights both key principles and practical tips for moving your services online.
You can also find a series of how-tos, advice and resources from The Catalyst, a national network of organisations supporting voluntary sector strengthen its digital capabilities.
Superhighways is continuing to develop guides and resources for charities and community organisations. Guides are focused on remote working, including video conferencing using Microsoft Teams, choosing tools for service delivery and staying safe online.
Need one-to-one advice or help getting up and running?
The Greater London Authority is offering digital support for civil society organisations based in London, from a network of partners - including DataKind UK and Superhighways.
This could include advice on setting up a website, establishing a phone helpline or running virtual meetings and conferences to name a few.
Free and affordable technology offers
Churches and faith groups can use the free Covid-19 Wellbeing Survey and Dashboard from Datawise London partner, Makerble, to better understand the practical, emotional and spiritual needs of their congregations.
Markerble are also offering their survey tool Surveystack available for free for three months for any small charity or community organisation that needs it.
In short, we understand that the coronavirus pandemic is putting additional pressure on the charitable sector, and we hope you are taking good care of yourself, your families, and your team.
Though organisations need to act quickly, be mindful of data privacy, digital access and exclusion, and tech-solutionism!