Case Studies

The ICT Hub has collected a range of case studies to demonstrate the impact that ICT has made to organisations and individuals in the voluntary and community sector.

If you would like to share you experiences with the sector then please fill in the attached pro forma, we may feature your case study on the website, in our newsletter or at events download case study pro forma (Word 52 KB)


  • Ability Business Centre helps people with disabilities learn new skills by supporting them to use software such as verbal reading and recognition tools
  • Blind in Business has redesigned its website to make it more accessible to people with visual impairments
  • NEW Change found out about accessible computing to help both their staff and service users
  • NEW Higher Moors Community Centre introduced their service users to accessible technologies with the help of the regional ICT champion
  • NEW Second Chance Centre found out people who had suffered severe head trauma and/or brain injury could get access to computers
  • NEW Wansbeck CVS worked with their regional ICT champion to find out how they could make their PCs more accessible

Communicating using ICT

  • Slyco - enabling trustees to have better communication
  • Bristol Wireless have been pioneers in the use of wireless computing to support the community, with wi-fi connections giving online access to homeless people, and setting up mobile cyber cafes at music festivals
  • Cambridge Corn Exchange made improvements to their website, such as introducing an e-mailing list and online ticketing, allowing them to engage better with their customers
  • COPE (Cambridge Older People's Enterprise) set up a website to raise awareness of their work and increase membership
  • NEW Derby 3D made use of an online survey to assess the needs of organisations in their region
  • Durham & Chester-le-Street Primary Care Trust used a text messaging service to engage with young people
  • Pelvic Pain Support Network (PPSN) used ICT to improve stakeholder access to support and information
  • Samaritans used email to help people communicate with them more easily
  • NEW Torbay ChangeUp Consortium created a web portal to help support the voluntary and community sector in their region
  • Wireless Case studies - two case studies of how small community projects have used wireless technology to get connected
  • Youth Action Network have improved the doorway to different parts of their website to ensure an even balance of traffic to both the main and the youth site

ICT Strategy and Implementation

  • NEW Database grief is a cautionary tale of how one organisation went about sourcing a database
  • Holding Accountable - a case study on the issue of Governance
  • ICT Hub partner AbilityNet have used technology to be more energy efficient and cost effective
  • NEW Carers Centre Brighton & Hove commissioned a new internal information system to help them manage their client information
  • Breast Cancer Care have used call recording and monitoring systems to improve their services
  • DDD case study - how one charity learnt the hard way
  • EAG case study - a pensioners group found technology got in the way!
  • Gingerbread is a support organisation for lone parents and they have had a complete overall of their organisation's ICT
  • HOPE Services is a frontline VCO that has used ICT to improve their efficiency and launch a new, successful ICT training service for the homeless in Bassetlaw
  • NEW Lasa carried out a two week experience to see if they could use only web based office products such as calendar, email, file storage and address book
  • Northumberland Community Development Network is an infrastructure organisation that has used ICT to support small VCOs across Northumberland
  • SPAN is an organisation working with one parent families that has used ICT to manage their contacts and activity
  • NEW Survivors UK worked with White Box Digital (a corporate ICT organisation) to plan and implement their ICT.  Find out more about this successful voluntary / private sector partnership.

Free and Open Source Software

  • Access Space is a "media lab" where people can use a bank of computers for free to learn, create and communicate online.  All of the ICT is recycled and the whole space runs on open source software, both the back end infrastructure and software on the desktop
    To find out more about the Access Space, download the Access Space case study (PDF 208 KB)
  • The Basement is a not for profit social centre and cafe, in Manchester, providing free ICT resources to the local community.  The Basement over hauled their ICT systems using open source software.  To find out more about The Basement's review of their ICT systems and subsequent use of open source technology  download The Basement case study (PDF 157 KB)
  • Contact A Family is a UK-wide charity that has transformed its ICT systems, using open source technologies, to improve their efficiency and provide a high quality service to families of disabled children
  • NEW Environmental Law Foundation were looking for a "green" alternative to buying brand new PCs.  Their solution involved loading open source software on to donated PCs.
  • NEW A Leeds voluntary organisation donated their unwanted PCs to a local organistion, first installing Open Office on them
  • People and Planet are a campaigning group who decided to move from using Microsoft software to Free Open Source Software (FOSS)

  Sources of Support

  • NEW BTEG, PATH and ROTA addressed the challenge of finding adequate ICT support by sharing an ICT worker
  • Care Network is a small organisation that received ICT support from a local circuit rider to integrate their systems and provide all their services to all areas
  • NEW Connecting Dorset is an innovative project to give rural Dorset communities access to computers
  • Hidden Voices - How simple support makes a difference to communicating with stakeholders
  • NEW High Peak Braille Group worked with their regional ICT champion to make sure their visual impairments didn't stop them making the most out of technology
  • How Does One Person Make a Difference in ICT in the Voluntary and Community Sector looks at the role of individual contributions to supporting ICT
  • St. Sidwells Centre is a small organisation that has benefitted from a dedicated ICT support provider
  • NEW Women's Refuge used their regional ICT champion to help them do a review of their ICT and put together a funding bid to support the upkeep of their equipment


  • Foleshills Women's Training have fitted an ICT suite of 25 computers to provide a drop-in facility for local women who do not have access to a personal computer or internet facilities at home
  • Lynemouth Resource Centre are a community trust who have developed a resource centre for the local community to improve the skills base residents

Using New Media

  • The Media Trust have produced a booklet of case studies, highlighting 10 VCOs that have used new media to communicate with their audience.  Visit our publications section to download a copy of this booklet.
  • ACEVO, the membership organisation for VCS Chief Executives, have developed a new way for their Chief Executive to communicate with members by creating a web blog
  • Susie Halksworth started to write a blog when she was made responsible for implementing the Advice For Life FOSS project, testing free and open source software for the VCS.  Susie uses her blog to share her concerns, challenges and learning with her team and the wider community and has got more out of it than she could ever have imagined.  To find out more about Susie's blogging experience  download the open source blogging case study (PDF 188 KB).
  • AFFORD and its partners in the UK and Africa have learnt how to blog, enabling them to reach a wider audience and learn about real African development issues facing individuals
  • Education Action have begun work on two blogs; one for teachers in the UK to talk with teachers they have visited and worked with in Lebanon, the second blog is for trained refugees who are human rights activists, which means they can share ideas and skills on campaigning and lobbying. We also look at companies offering primary teaching jobs in London.
  • NEW High Peak CVS decided that they wanted to include as many people as possible in their 5th anniversary AGM so used new media technologies to go virtual!
  • Hillfields Community Radio actively promote the involvement of the local community through the use of radio
  • Mind Bloggling have created a blogging site to give people experiencing the effects of mental ill health, a voice
  • Oxfam have created a viral film highlighting Oxfam Unwrapped, the alternative gift catalogue
  • Tearfund are a frontline VCO who have used new media to get across complex policy issues
  • NEW Yorkshire and the Humber Regional Disability Network used email groups to keep their network alive
  • NEW  Family Holiday Association.  The impact of using audio clips - podcasting - to convey a message. 

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