One Digital – the “poster child for collective impact”!

Published: Jun 2nd, 2016 | Author: Laura Simpson

Collaboration, not competition – that was the overriding theme at the One Digital stakeholder event in London on Wednesday 25 May 2016.

13996_219_GraingePhotographyAround 60 people from a wide range of organisations attended to hear the latest from One Digital, a national digital inclusion programme funded by the Big Lottery Fund. The programme is helping thousands of people with digital skills across the UK through the recruitment, training and support of hundreds of Digital Champions.

The event welcomed Dawn Austwick, Chief Executive at the Big Lottery Fund who spoke emphatically about how digital is a key enabler for people to make their own choices and the importance of ensuring no-one is left behind. Dawn praised the One Digital programme for its granular approach of working and engaging with local communities, citing it as the “poster child for collective impact”.

In just four months the One Digital collaboration has seen significant results. Over 350 Champions have joined the programme from over 130 different organisations with 60% having completed their online training so far. To date the Champions have already helped to engage and support around 2,500 learners right across the UK.

At the event two Digital Champions, Dan Cottam and Glenn Lloyd, spoke about how they support their local communities with digital skills. Listening to what people need and identifying the key areas they want to learn ahead of each session are essential elements for supporting people on their digital journey. As Glenn said “being friendly, relaxed and encouraging” are vital ingredients for teaching success. For both it was clear that being a Digital Champion is hugely rewarding on a personal level. In Dan’s words “it’s incredible to see the way people progress as they develop their digital confidence”.

Each of the One Digital partners spoke passionately about their role in the programme, what they are bringing to it – and getting out of it:

13996_255_GraingePhotographyEmma Weston, One Digital Programme Director said: “One Digital is a unique collaboration. It’s more than just a group of organisations working under one umbrella. It is a partnership connected by a golden thread – the use of Digital Champions and championing models to deliver sustainable digital skills – but which allows each partner to use that golden thread as best suits them. The partnership is glued together by common evaluation, governance and programme management structures which we have all developed and agreed in concert.

“One Digital is flourishing because of the goodwill, energy and dedication to the collaboration that each partner brings. Our sum really is greater than any of our parts. Our third party evaluation (using data to date) shows partners agree that “what One Digital is trying to do would be difficult for any single organisation to achieve on its own”. The programme has already realised significant achievements in its early days and is clearly evidencing the effectiveness of Digital Champion model. We look forward to furthering the aims of One Digital in the months to come.”

Delegate feedback from the event demonstrated widespread interest in how the collaboration works and how the partners’ diverse Digital Champion projects are delivering on the ground. There was also significant demand for a similar One Digital event later in the year.

For more information visit the One Digital website at or follow #OneDigital on Twitter.







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