Peter Jaco explains how his volunteer force of technologists can help charities and public sector organisations with tech issues
When Alistair Forbes and I launched the Scottish Tech Army (STA) on 28 April, we had no idea it would grow so big or so fast. We now have a rapid response army of over 800 highly skilled furloughed, or out of work, technologists who have volunteered their time to support charities, local authorities and the Scottish Government. Many of these organisations are facing a number of technological problems during these challenging times, and we can help.
As a not for profit company we wanted to harness the world-class tech skills we have in Scotland to support people and organisations who are in the frontline of fighting the coronavirus. For instance many charities might have furloughed their technical staff or have problems accessing databases or communicating with their donors and the people that benefit from their services. We can give these organisations the resources and skills they need now as well as during the post-pandemic economic recovery.
So if you are working for an organisation that needs some digital or technological help, we’d love to hear from you. We have a very easy process, just get in touch with us on our website to tell us more about your project. We’ll then arrange for one of our business analysts to call you back find to get a few more details to see if it’s an appropriate project for us. If we both agree to go ahead, we’ll put together a team to help you build your project.
We’ve already got over 30 projects up and running both for Scottish charities. For instance we’re helping small businesses and charities to get online so they can keep trading during this period, we are looking at building apps that can help volunteers deliver services to the vulnerable people they work with.
A good example of this is Get2gether, a charity that arranges social activities for disabled people in Edinburgh and Lothians in a safe environment. They had problems with their website which we were able to sort out for them. This is what events co-ordinator Mojca Becaj had to say about us. "Wow, I am impressed. These STA guys are magicians, they fixed our website overnight and offered to help with any other tech problems we might have."
We know that sometimes technology can be a bit daunting, but we’re a friendly bunch and we’re very happy to have a chat with you. So if you need help, get in touch with us.
To find out more about how the STA can help with your project or how to volunteer for the tech army, go to the website.
Peter Jaco is the founding director of Scottish Tech Army