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Supporting Scotland's vibrant voluntary sector

Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations

The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations is the membership organisation for Scotland's charities, voluntary organisations and social enterprises. Charity registered in Scotland SC003558. Registered office Mansfield Traquair Centre, 15 Mansfield Place, Edinburgh EH3 6BB.

Introducing our digital inclusion roadmap for Scotland   

The coronavirus pandemic increased the speed at which digital has become embedded in our lives: digital was our lifeline, we used it to build a new way of life.  Four years later, this new way of life has become the status quo.  A lot has already changed, and further change is certain.  We are on a journey, and we need to make sure that no one is left behind.  For many people, often those already experiencing social inequality and poverty, this is not the case.  They are not able to access the benefits that being online can bring.  At SCVO, we believe that this inequality is unacceptable.    

We care deeply about those who experience digital exclusion.  It exacerbates social exclusion causing increased pressure on services and support that charities deliver.  It has negative impacts at individual, community and societal levels.   

  • People already in greatest need of public services are increasingly unable to access them due to a digital first agenda.   
  • Those managing on the tightest of budgets can't take advantage of cheaper deals.  
  • Loneliness and isolation can be increased where people can’t keep in touch with friends and family. 

We recognise that digital inclusion is complex and multi-faceted, it has traditionally been seen as a luxury or a personal responsibility.  We don’t think this is the case - digital is an essential part of modern life.  Making digital inclusion everyone’s responsibility: a roadmap for Scotland demonstrates actions that all organisations can take to help create a digitally inclusive nation.  Our framework for action consists of five specific challenges, the core elements required to achieve digital inclusion, supported by the three broader enablers which need to be in place to support them. 

A framework of challenges:  

  • Motivation - to be part of the digital world, free from any personal barriers; and   
  • Access to the right device – the ability to afford an internet enabled device that is suitable for your needs and the task in hand; and   
  • Affordable connectivity – so that you can connect your device to the internet; and   
  • Skills and confidence – to navigate the internet, keeping yourself safe, doing the things you want to do; and  
  • Inclusive design – when you get online, spaces are well designed so that everyone can use them.   

Within each challenge are concrete actions that organisations can take to be part of a movement that wants to make Scotland as digitally inclusive as possible. 

Creating greater digital inclusion is something that we can all work towards.  It's something everyone can contribute to. 

Last modified on 23 November 2023