Celebrating a harvest

Celebrating harvest? Tapping into the internet? What’s the connection? It certainly had us scratching our heads at the Tap into IT ‘stakeholder’ workshop on the morning of Friday 2nd Sept. We were thrilled to have each of our Stakeholder groups (-service users, volunteers and staff, various partner organisations) represented in a proportionate way among the nearly 60 people filling the good-sized room at Gillespie Crescent sheltered housing complex, where we hold one of our Computer Clubs. We wanted to involve them in thinking about our purpose and ‘mission’, core values and services and to sound them out on what would be most useful or interesting in the Club context.

Each of the 9 groups that we split folk into entered into the activities with enthusiasm and a certain amount of puzzlement, from the warm-up rounds of ‘Blankety-Blank’ and ‘Catchphrase’ on the harvest theme to exercises with a more obvious connection!  All expertly compered by Rayyan Karim, one of our excellent Lloyds Banking Group volunteers who came up with such an imaginative and slightly wacky but engaging programme after a careful process of consultation and involvement in one of the Clubs.  Thanks are also due to those representing our partner organisations for their involvement on the day including Dorry McLaughlin, Chief Exec of Viewpoint Housing Association along with 2 Board members, Roger Stewart and Tom Roehricht, Sheila Sneddon and Stephen Davidson from the RNIB Online Today, Aleks Pakula from Living It Up, Bob Orr of Bob Orr Training, Rebecca Stafford from the SCVO Digital Participation Scotland team and Lindsey Crawford from the Edinburgh Social Enterprise Network. Many took on ‘scribing’ and other duties within the groups as well as contributing great ideas, for which we are very grateful. We really did end up with a  bumper harvest of responses and ideas that we are now poring over and will help shape our future direction.

Our ‘harvest workers’ were rewarded with a delicious lunch, courtesy of Scotmid who had given us a generous supply of tokens which Jill Williams from Bay Trees Community Cafe used to very good effect in putting on a sumptuous spread, supplemented by delicious fruit and veg purchased from Dig In, the local community greengrocer just up the road at Bruntsfield.

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