You know that volunteering brings personal benefits to health; making you feel good, reducing isolation and reducing stress. You see that people are becoming more aware of and influenced by the social impact feel good factor when choosing where to spend their cash. And you can understand that Business has an obligation to consider the community and environment when making decisions.

But in a world where empathy is fast becoming a new currency, do you KEN how to connect all three?

Back in late 2017, Volunteer Dundee ran a Knowledge Exchange Network (KEN) pilot; testing out the idea of formalising the relationship between the skill needs and offers of the Third Sector, Public Sector and Private Sector in Dundee – a kind of bridge to make it simpler to access Corporate Social Responsibility opportunities for all stakeholders.

Following a successful pilot with a match between one charity and an architect who supported with their Community Asset Transfer plan, and a workshop that saw around 20 Charities benefit from a leading marketing agencies’ expertise, Dundee TSI secured Rank Foundation funding for a Business Planning Officer based within Volunteer Dundee, who will develop the service over the next two years.

Kirsty Slater hit the ground running on 7th January 2019, making time to meet with various stakeholders and quickly taking advantage of an opportunity with the Service Design Academy. This saw 21 students tackle the KEN concept through a series of research and testing activities using various Service Design tools. The students created a wealth of research over a two-day bootcamp, which Kirsty will use alongside the pilot research, to inform the first steps of this exciting project.

Over the coming months, Kirsty will launch a series of opportunities to get as many TSI perspectives as possible to help shape the KEN. In two years it will need to be fully sustainable and easily adapted to suit a changing landscape. Opportunities will include individual and group events, online data collection and research around what stakeholders want from a Knowledge Exchange Network.

To find out more, email or call 07889 571066.