Charities boost their digital presence


Community organisations have been receiving support from graduates to develop digital solutions

23rd April 2019 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

A dozen community organisations have benefited from the chance to build their digital presence.

CodeClan’s Client Xperience programme seen organisations paired with over 100 graduates, who used their newly acquired skills to volunteer their time to build digital solutions.

For the last six months, CodeClan has piloted the programme, which enables students to volunteer two of their final weeks to organisations who are creating social impact but need digital assistance to complete projects.

Volunteers work with partners to identify opportunities and set objectives. They then use their new programming skills to meet goals whilst gaining invaluable experience in a real work environment, with an existing codebase.

Melinda Matthews Clarkson, CodeClan’s chief executive, said: “CodeClan is an integral part of the country's start-up and scale-up scene with over 500 graduates placed in companies across Scotland. I firmly believe this new programme will make our graduates even more valuable to employers and improve their productivity at work even further.

“Being able to implement new skills on a live project at the same time as working on something with real purpose, is a win win.”

Genna Walsh worked on the OneCherry project, which helped develop an app for browsing items in charity shops. OneCherry had started this ground-breaking project to bring charity shops online but needed additional resource for the final stage. She said: “You get to contribute to something meaningful whilst at the same time gaining valuable industry experience that instantly improves your CV and interview content. It’s a no brainer!”

So far, 10 cohorts of students, split into 22 teams, have taken part, and worked with, organisations such as Alzheimer Scotland, News Direct, OneCherry, Beyond Green and the Edinburgh Fringe.

Oliver Byrne, a sustainability advisor for Beyond Green, said: “The CX projects gave us a fantastic opportunity to make real progress on a live project. The students were very professional and we thoroughly enjoyed the experience, even taking aspects of their processes into our normal working life.

“Phrases like wireframe, MVP and sprint are now commonplace here and we use the techniques taught within CodeClan regularly.

“We have included CodeClan’s involvement in two recent funding applications, one of which resulted in the company winning a £140,000 grant from Innovate UK to work with the accountancy firms to develop its platform into a product to transform the accountancy sector.”

More information on the programme and details of eligibility are available online.