Digilearning is an educational technology charity that provides digital career masterclasses, networks and mentoring to help young people develop digital skills, become entrepreneurial creators and "enter careers that they will love".
Digilearning connects diverse audiences including educators, digital leaders and businesses who support the charity and their programmes. An example is GirlRise, which focuses on upskilling young women aged 16-24.
Co-founder Sarah Wilson wanted to cement these relationships beyond the 12 week programmes. She decided online communities would be a bridge for "the gap between what companies need and what students want".
Sarah chose Guild for its ease of use as an online community platform and the broader professional network that exists on Guild. Sarah told us a bit more about the DigiLearning community, its purpose and goals for the future.
Why did you want to launch a community for Digilearning’s various audiences?
"Our goal is to empower young people by giving them in-demand career skills and our world is increasingly digital and interconnected.
Students need to develop a practical understanding of the future of work, and what skills tomorrow's industries will need.
As a charity, we need to understand the ever-changing needs of the businesses our students will be working in.
Creating an online community allows us to fulfil both of those needs. At the same time it allows our students and alumni to start developing crucial soft skills like networking, forming professional relationships and understanding how businesses work.
We’re a charity that is also looking to grow our supporter base. Financial support is really important, but we also need to find new mentors, experts and opportunities for our students.
We know the best way to do this is to build solid and long-term relationships.
If partners can actually see the impact of our work on individuals they've come to know, they’re more confident about increasing their involvement in our work."
What do you like about Guild as a community platform?
"We looked at other platforms but Guild’s combination of being mobile-first and an existing network with the opportunity to run our own private community won us over.
We absolutely love Guild - it’s so easy to use and has a fantastic group of people and companies already on the platform. We knew we’d be in good company - as a charity, reputation, data and safety are obviously very important to us.
Our mentors, supporters and partners have a safe space to connect. But at the same time we can join in with that wider network on Guild.
Social media platforms are a powerful tool for raising awareness, but they fall down on building deep professional relationships.
On Guild we can focus on our work and our students can see how professional networking should really be done. That's important when you're taking your first steps in the world of work."
Who can join the DigiLearning Guild community, and what can they expect?
"Naturally, we want to keep it a safe space so we vet new members. However we welcome brands and businesses who care about youth employment to join the conversation.
Potential supporters, mentors for our students and speakers for masterclasses are especially welcome. We also love to hear from companies and individuals who want to understand more about how they can support the workforce of the future.
We encourage conversations around the future of work and the skills businesses need. Our focus is on how young people can develop richer, future-proof careers.
Ultimately Digilearning wants to create a community that counts, and we know that Guild's philosophy attracts like-minded but diverse professionals who we can work with and who can support our mission - to provide digital skills for underserved communities.
We want to make a difference to every member, so we’re there to listen and learn just as much as our students are!"
How can people support Digilearning and get involved?
"We are always on the hunt to partner with organisations looking for young digital talent, and people who want to support youth employment programmes.
We need help financially, with mentors and with workshops!
We are not a tick box, we make 'it' happen by supporting young people into careers they will love.
We have various sponsorship options available. Our aim is to support young people, show them alternative career paths and help them to increase their employability status.
Apply to join our Digilearning community on Guild today and let's chat about how you can help to achieve our mission."
Other charities who have built their online communities on Guild
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