Here’s the slightly belated news that Nominet Trust recently announced funding of more than £1 million for the first round of projects under the Digital Edge programme.
You can see the background provocation paper here that helped inform the programme, written by socialreporters, Tim Davies, Alex Farrow and me. Some terrific projects are under way, bearing out the innovative ideas we discovered during our exploration. There’s now another call for proposals, which you can see here.
Following an unprecedented number of applications, the Trust has awarded 14 organisations more than £1 million to support their work in using technology to improve young people’s participation in society.
With close to a million young people unemployed and prospects for full time employment bleak, internships and other low-paid work placements have become a vital way to boost employment prospects. But expensive rent or travel costs often prevent young people from taking advantage of such opportunities.
Room for Tea, one of the 14 organisations receiving funding, connects guests in need of short-term, affordable accommodation in London with hosts who have a spare room in their homes. This project has the potential to benefit young jobseekers while also reducing the social isolation often felt by older people living on their own. Nominet Trust investment will enable Room for Tea to develop its online platform and expand its reach to a wider number of potential young beneficiaries.
Catch22 is another organisation that has been approved for funding. Their project comprises an app that encourages young people to make a positive contribution to their community – such as keeping their neighbourhood clean – and in the process helps them to discover and develop the soft skills and confidence needed when applying for a job.
Annika Small, Nominet Trust CEO, commented: “Digital technology offers new ways for young people to develop and demonstrate their skills and talents. Importantly it can help young people to connect with the wider community, whether that is active participation in their local neighbourhood or contributing to an online group. This in turn can boost their skills and confidence which will help when it comes to applying for a job.
“At Nominet Trust, we are excited to be supporting so many forward-thinking organisations. From creating new forms of online skills exchange and reward, new connections that increase young people’s access to resources and networks of support, or new ways of showcasing talents and experience to future employers, these projects are demonstrating how digital technology has the potential to broaden young people’s horizons and improve their social and economic participation.”