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Update from December 2019

Welcome to the end of December 2019 issue of Digital WM News and our final issue for this year.  

We hope you have enjoyed our e-bulletin this year and we wish you and your organisation/community group a happy and prosperous 2020

In this issue we include:

  • News including Brum Data Workshops, Code Your Future coding school launching in Brum, 3rd cohort School of Code bootcampers confirmed, Charity Excellence Framework update, CRM Advice request, Food Poverty Mapping Project by Data Orchard
  • Events including You Got This 2020 conference and Data Essentials
  • People: Edafe Onerhime, Head of Data for Effective Development @DFID_UK
  • Resources including Next generation of charity leaders, How to design services that work, tools for funders, Charity Bank UK Social Sector Health check report, Data Champion podcast, Charities digital resources list, 2020 social networks predictions, Sample impact report, Guide to using 2019 IMD, Enhancing digital literacy with Wikipedia
  • Vacancies 15 vacancies 
...and so much more!

We continue to increase digital skills and knowledge in the VCSE sectors, as part of Project 2020, by curating the most useful items we see on the web during the month.

We'd love to hear your stories of increasing digital skills and knowledge too. Please email them to Pauline at, marking them for my attention.

We aimed to double our readership by the end of 2019 - we achieved 50% of this. 

You can help us increase our reach and increase digital skills in the West Midlands by encouraging your colleagues and friends to subscribe to Digital WM News in 2020. 

They can SIGN UP HERE to ensure they receive the latest issue as soon as it is published.

For our new subscribers in December, we welcome you!

Please note that this issue and all previous issues can be found on our website here


Pauline Roche,
Editor, Digital WM News


Brum Data workshops with 360 Giving 

Coding school for underrepresented people to launch in Birmingham

Pic: Claire Bickley, Regional Manager, Code Your Future (photo: Pauline Roche)
National charity Code Your Future is planning a Birmingham launch for February 2020. The charity runs free of charge coding schools for refugees, migrants and people from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Courses run for 8 months, with one day a week used as class-based study and the rest as independent study. The aim of the course is to support students into employment, with 70% of graduates from previous classes having found employment or further education opportunities within 6 months of graduating. With successful programmes in London, Manchester, Glasgow and Rome, Code Your Future’s unique model has seen real opportunity in Birmingham.
The first Birmingham Tech Week held earlier this year, aiming to put Birmingham (and the wider region) firmly on the global Tech map, gave Birmingham Tech companies a platform to showcase their innovation and encourage further investment in the City. Events across the City showcased the great work already taking place, offer training opportunities and encourage collaborative working in Technology.
In the UK, there is a shortage of tech skills[1], even though tech has a lower barrier to entry than other professions. This means the higher salaries in tech have a strong positive effect in disadvantaged communities. The unemployment rate among refugees in the UK is at 18%, three times that of the UK-born population[2]. This untapped potential can be a boon for local economies, and at the same time a powerful vehicle for better integration.[3]
As well as full stack web development, Code Your Future also provide personal development sessions, meaning students have the opportunity to work on CVs, interview skills and build confidence. The most unique part about this programme is that the course is mostly delivered by volunteers and funding is offered to cover travel, equipment and childcare which shows how Code Your Future are truly building and supporting communities.
Code Your Future Founder, Germán Bencci said:
“We’ve created a space where volunteers can share their time and expertise to help build the next generation of tech superstars. There is no cost to the participants and, critically, we are helping to solve the digital skills gap. It really is a win-win situation.
We wanted to create the most positive impact among the refugee and asylum seeker community. We quickly realized a dearth of options existed for these groups in terms of career choices. We knew that helping this community to become part of the tech ecosystem would be an optimal way to help with a new start.”
To find out more about Code Your Future in Birmingham, contact Regional Manager Claire Blickley at or to sign up as a volunteer, visit
[1] 50% of UK tech companies highlighted a shortage of highly skilled potential employees.  25% described sourcing talent as a ‘major challenge’ with demand far outstripping supply - Tech Nation report 2018
[2] UNHCR, International Organization for Migration (IOM), Business in the Community (BITC), UK government report - ‘Tapping Potential: Guidelines to Help UK Businesses Employ Refugees’
[3] Rossella Pagliuchi-Lor, UNHC

School of Code Jan 2020 bootcampers confirmed


Lloyds Bank Foundation’s digital transformation makes it easier for small and local charities to secure funds

"...Lloyds Bank Foundation has recognised the important role that small charities have in local communities. As part of its digital transformation and simplification of the grant process, the Foundation has committed to helping charities deliver further impact. As part of this digital transformation process, a new website has been launched, which will advise a charity whether they are eligible to apply and, if they are, whether they can apply for £45,000 or £100,000..."

Full story by Chrissy Chiu in Charity Digital News here

Charity Excellence Framework update alert


'Why the Small Charities Coalition is redefining its remit'

The Small Charities Coalition's new chief executive, Rita Chadha, tells Harriet Whitehead (of Civil Society magazine) about the organisation's new strategy. 

Help John Popham use social video to change the world

Simplicity of community media

Neighbourhood News Online‘ is a Birmingham-based community website hosting a Directory, an Events Calendar and a variety of news items. It is managed by Rachel Gillies and gets about 1,000 hits per month.

Through the site you can share your organisation’s details, stories, news and events (there are some easy to use online forms on the site), explore what is on across Balsall Heath and Sparkbrook and signpost others to local services and activities. It is designed to be a tool to link people together and tap into the huge amount of positive, community focused work happening in this area.


Honorary fellowship for Sarah Crawley, i-SE from Social Enterprise UK

CRM Advice request

ecobirmingham are a small environmental charity looking for a professional to advise us on customer relationship management systems.

We envisage this is a short project done face-to-face, over the phone or by video conference over a few conversations.

What are we looking for? The ideal volunteer would be a professional who has experience in using CRM on a day-to-day basis and can relate to its needs in a small charity setting.

What difference will you make? You will help us gather and retain our audience and stakeholder information more effectively, enabling us to help focus our work and create positive environmental change in the city.

Food Poverty Mapping Project

"...The Food Alliance partnership in Herefordshire aims to reduce hunger by improving access to and awareness of affordable, healthy food. As part of this they want to identify target areas to focus their collaborative efforts (charities, local authority public health and welfare, churches and foodbanks).

Data Orchard completed a literature review of research on food poverty, identified relevant and available datasets at sub-county level, and developed a set of indicators to identify food poverty risk factors using data at ‘lower super output area’ geographies...."

Full post here by Data Orchard

Role of public libraries/librarians helping communities navigate a data-driven economy


Alert for charities – fraudsters impersonating staff

This 10th December alert from the Charity Commission provides information and advice to charities about mandate fraud (impersonation of staff).

"...We have received several reports from charities who have been targeted by fraudsters impersonating members of staff, specifically attempting to change employees bank details. In all these cases the request was made through an email..."
9th Jan
How to get more business through your use of LinkedIn
"Learn how to build a powerful profile and develop a strategy to proactively find, connect in the right way and engage easily with your ideal contacts- missing out the gatekeepers!"

18th Jan
You Got This 2020
One-day conference for early/change career developers and their managers - speakers include Dan Parkes Chair of the West Midlands Regional Group of Game Workers Unite UK

28th Jan
Digital Marketing Course

30th Jan
Zoku Collective: A Festival of Ideas
"With your help we want to put together a plan to develop apps for the real world. No experience necessary, just good ideas."

31st Jan

Data Essentials (by Superhighways)

Regular Meetups - *new this issue*
Birmingham Open Code
- weekly (Tues) open study session for folks who program or those who want to get started
*Birmingham Settlement IT Club - weekly (Wed, 1-3pm)* 
Birmingham Tech Cluster - monthly (second Friday) tech, digital and innovation cluster
Brum SMC – monthly (last Fri) social media meetup
Coding Wednesday – monthly (last Wed) - Codeacademy, YouTube tutorials etc
Digital Evenings (Fircroft College) – semi-regular - improve your digital skills
fizzPOP – monthly (2nd Wednesday) Lock picking
Net Squared Midlands – regular #techforgood meetup 

Tech Wednesday – monthly meet up for like-minded individuals in tech industry in Birmingham area
Digital and IT
Fircroft College, Birmingham

Edafe Onerhime, Head of Data for Effective Development @DFID_UK


Edafe Onerhime is a Data Specialist, speaker, and writer. She is an expert in leading collaborative change around the value and use of data. She is now leading data strategy as Head of Data for Effective Development @DFID_UK

Edafe has 25 years experience in public sector consultancy, charities, social investment, consumer finance, and retail.

She has consulted with public bodies like the Cabinet Office, funders like Wellcome Trust, and businesses like Social Investment Business and FutureGov.

Edafe wrote the Open Standards for Data Guidebook, a synthesis of best practices for open data initiatives gathered from a variety of people and organisations. Edafe designed the guidebook for people with little data management experience as well as data-savvy professionals. 

Her motto is: Data + Design + Culture

What we can learn from the next generation of charity leaders

"A new generation of charity leaders are operating in very different ways from their predecessors, reflecting the changing nature of the sector..." says Zoe Amar in Third Sector post 

Good Services: How to Design Services that Work

A practical book for practitioners and non-practitioners alike interested in better service delivery, this book is the definitive new guide to designing services that work for users by Louise Downe. (via @rufflemuffin)

Good grantmaking - tools for funders

Whole Twitter thread starts here

Inaugural Charity Bank UK Social Sector Health check report

"...For our inaugural UK Social Sector Health Check report, we polled 182 social sector leaders to understand the challenges they face, and to assess the impact of the current climate on the sectors ability to respond to the needs of people and communities.

We also invite guest contributors to share insights on the state of the sector, how political and Brexit uncertainty are impacting, as well as commenting on the latest on funding, regulation, technology and governance..."

Download the report 

What Does It Take to Be a Data Champion? (podcast)

Rachel Rank of 360Giving introduces a new kind of "data expedition" for professionals looking to connect with their work.

Resources for charities looking at 'digital'

Full thread of tweets 


360 Giving News

Issue 10 (Dec 2019) of the newsletter of the funders open data platform 360 Giving supporting UK grantmakers to share information about who, where and what they fund to an open data standard to build the big picture of grantmaking in the UK.

This issue includes information about Data champions, new era, staffing and branding for 360 Giving and a relaunch of the Lloyds Bank Foundation grants programme

16 predictions for social networks in 2020: What’s next for Facebook, TikTok, Slack, and more


"...some predictions from you about where platforms and democracy are headed in 2020 and beyond...Here are your thoughts, along with some of mine. This year, I’m ordering these in roughly how likely I think they are. So, the most likely things to happen at the top, and we move further into crazy town as you scroll down. Generally speaking, I feel more comfortable predicting product moves than policy shifts..." by Casey Newton via Ross McCulloch

Example Impact Report by Bexley VSC

Guide to using 2019 Index of Deprivation

RnR Organisation will be organising an event in early 2020 to help people working with small non-profits in the West Midlands to use the 2019 IMD.

Get in touch with Pauline if you're interested in knowing more and/or being involved - 0797 440 7017

"Good" isn't good enough [Longer read]

by Ben Green

"...Despite widespread enthusiasm among computer scientists to contribute to “social good,” the field’s efforts to promote good lack a rigorous foundation in politics or social change. There is limited discourse regarding what “good” actually entails, and instead a reliance on vague notions of what aspects of society are good or bad..."

Read full paper - link  in tweet (via Cassie Robinson)

WikiLiteracy Enhancing students’ digital literacy with Wikipedia

"...Students’ confidence in their digital capabilities was assessed at the start and end of the module and showed a clear increase in confidence across all categories..."

Read full journal article by Caroline Ball, University of Derby

Today's skills, for everyone

Lloyd's Bank Academy " packed with free digital skills learning for any level. Learn in the way that suits you, online or face-to-face..."
All vacancies in the West Midlands or home based, listed by closing date (unless otherwise stated)

1st January
Learning and Development Business Partner
Islamic Relief Worldwide
£34,387 per annum

3rd January
Website Officer
Practical Action
£29,812 - £35,446 per year

5th January
Delivery Manager
The Prince's Trust
£25,700 - £38,900 dependent on location and experience

Executive Director
Muscular Dystrophy Support Centre
£38,000 - £42,000 per year (pro rata), depending on experience

Project Manager
The Prince's Trust
£26,800 - £32,800 per year dependent on location and experience

6th January
Direct Marketing Officer
Practical Action
£26,433-£28,690 pro rata (depending on experience)

7th January
Legacy Giving Executive
Third Solutions
£25000 - £30000 per annum
12th January
Head of ICT - Birmingham
£63,465 p.a.

14th January
Communications & Marketing Officer
Aquarius Action Projects
£23,370 per annum with progression to £24,600

15th January
Picture Editor
Easyweb NFP
circa £25,000 per year

16th January
Digital Content Officer
NHS Charities Together
Up to £27,000 per year

17th January
Advocacy and Campaigns Content Coordinator
Islamic Relief Worldwide
£36,568 per annum

Communications Officer
National Lottery Community Fund
£20,113 - £31,241 per year

22nd January
Head of Finance and Compliance
£38,220 - £42,466 per year

31st January
Membership & Support Services Officer (Maternity Cover)
UK Men's Sheds Association
£18,000.00 - £19,000.00 per year


Hi, I'm Pauline Roche. I'm a freelance journalist with a special interest in data journalism.

I'm also M.D. of RnR Organisation - we're a social enterprise and we aim to increase digital and data literacy amongst smaller non-profits, including by running the Net Squared Midlands meetup and the VCSSCamp unconference for voluntary sector infrastructure organisations.

If you've learned something through this newsletter, or you just think DWMN is great, you can read back issues here. You can also encourage others to subscribe.

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RnR Organisation is registered as a Company Ltd by Guarantee in England and Wales,
Company Registration Number 9140623 
Copyright © 2019 RnR Organisation, All rights reserved.

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