Digital You The Ridge SCIO

The Gathering 2018

The Ridge SCIO

Charity registered in Scotland SC047116

The Ridge: a training social enterprise, with community cafe, garden and individual support provision .
We aim to:
• help local people overcome issues around geographical isolation, which inhibits access to training and other supports.
• build resilience of individuals and the community, training in skills, increasing work readiness.
• signpost/facilitate access to other supports
Individuals' further issues include:
• social exclusion/isolation
• substance abuse
• mental health
• food poverty
• homelessness
We offer volunteer programmes, often for those further from the jobs market, allowing us to support people in a more holistic way, including training in basic lifeskills.
We run a 'Hungry Hatch' programme, using donated food from local businesses, which would otherwise go to landfill. This allows provision of free meals weekly for 30-50 individuals, providing nutrition, social contact, volunteering opportunities. We also run an SCVO funded programme, the Plenty Project, focussing on budgeting, cooking and nutrition.

  • From 1st September 2018 to 1st September 2019
  • Award: £10,000 via Call 6

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Project plan

Project description

Digital You aims to connect vulnerable people to their potential and their rights through the digital technology that is taken for granted within communities and workplaces.

Digital You will involve relaxed and informative workshops that will provide the necessary foundational digital skills to help improve quality of life and employment prospects. We would look to narrow the skills and employment gaps for vulnerable and marginalized members of our community.

Our subjects will include:

Learn about using a computer or mobile device such as a phone or tablet. This subject covers basic skills such using a keyboard, a mouse or a touchscreen.

How to search, explore and use the internet, keep in touch with email, use public services online - all while being safe, secure and respectful.

Ensuring confidence in everything you might need to do on the internet, including benefit management, banking, online shopping and social media.

Finding and applying for jobs is difficult, but learning how to search and apply for jobs online and making the best of your CV should help with process.

How to make appointments online, order repeat prescriptions and find advice on specific symptoms and conditions.

Finances are increasingly manged on-line, this subject will help inform on how to budget, bank and shopping online in a safe way.

Find out information about public services and save time and money by visiting local and national government websites. Using the internet as a free resource for continued and self-directed personal development.

Project milestones

Phase 1

Project Digital You preparation phase. Our first milestone will involve development and design of our course material and monitoring engagement with stakeholders.

Phase 2

Advertising and recruiting our first intake through a multi channel approach including by person invitation if appropriate. An ongoing milestone throughout the project.

Phase 3

Digital You goes live with our first cohort.

Phase 4

Full project evaluation assessment, evidencing and reporting



Digital You started in October 2018 and has delivered Essential Skills Training across the community. The sessions have been made up of 1:1 offerings whilst others were delivered in the group environment. The dynamic of one group worked so well together that they met and and ran their own workshop when the trainer couldn't make it along. This proved to be so successful that they reported back digitally - inclusive of emojis!

The Digital You programme has slotted in very well beside an ESF funded Routes to Work programme that is also delivered by The Ridge. These two offerings allow us to reach people with many and complex barriers to independence and ultimately employment. As they are already engaged with The Ridge through Routes to Work, it is easier for them to trust us when it comes to providing digital access, support and learning.

The Ridge will not be alone in witnessing the effects of lack of digital skills training and the newly over-hauled benefit system and going into 2019 we would envisage that this will continue to play a large part in the training we are offering our community; trying to ensure that they are not penalised for not being digitally literate or indeed have access to technology.

Digital You continues to help those lacking in the digital skills necessary to do day to day tasks online, often where an 'offline' alternative no longer exists.These are people that are scared of failure. Imagine not knowing how, or being able to afford, to get online. Imagine the isolation – the geographical, social, professional and financial isolation – that a lack of digital skills creates for so many in society today. These are the people that Digital You strives to reach and help.

We are aware that there are individuals that perhaps just need a bit of 'digital fine-tuning' but lack the access to a 1:1 session where they can ask the questions that matter to them in an environment that they are comfortable in.

What we wanted to achieve when designing Digital You was a hyper-local, easily identifiable and accessible provision that bolted on to our existing services. We were not looking to re-invent the wheel; our time and resources, like everyone's, are precious commodities and we knew embedding digital in our work could help maximise how we deploy both.

Our digital work is delivered in partnership with: