I have noticed that there is a phrase that strike fear through the hearts of most not-for-profits and social enterprises – that phrase is ‘IT strategy’. Both ‘IT’ and ‘strategy’ in themselves make most of these sectors nervous – as if everyone is talking in Russian suddenly, eyes start to glaze and there is distinct panic in the voices of senior leaders.
Recently I chatted to a group of young people – around 15 or so – who were feeling unsettled by changes to their youth club. These changes include new leadership and this, in my experience, is always unsettling for any group and perhaps especially for young people.
I am back helping with the very same youth club that inspired RunAClub – 10 years after I started it from scratch armed with nothing more than enthusiasm and a bit of knowledge of youth clubs. The club needs a bit of support through the transition of leaders and of course, more sustainable funding.
Nothing deep and meaningful this week – just short and sweet: HUGE news to tell you later next week. We can’t wait to tell you what we are up to with a big new customer. For the time being I will just say that we have taken on two new contracts this week – another Local Authority and an evaluation contract that we quoted for, for another LA.
Last weekend I stood on a stage (as far behind everyone else as I could) and sang ‘Making your mind up’ as ‘Bucks Fuzz’ in a spoof Eurovision contest. I was way out of my comfort zone – I hadn’t even realised it was a competition, albeit a fun one, until I turned up as I’d missed one or two rehearsals.
I recently looked back at my first blogs – when we managed to get funding to start our build of RunAClub three years ago. The theme is much the same as it is now in that we were clearly working extremely hard and were very focused. What also struck me is the optimism despite early funding set backs and so on – we also remain just as optimistic!
It has always been important to our team that we have personal experience of community volunteering, working with young people via youth groups or sports clubs for example, or education. I think it’s what sets us apart from other digital organisations – we haven’t just cooked up RunAClub as another tech offering that we ‘thought’ would be a good idea. We know from our own endeavours that it’s tough for volunteers to find the time to sort out the rota, share their club documentation, manage the club subs or write a club risk assessment.