SURF’s Dunoon Area Alliance has been supporting the development of Digital Dunoon, a partnership regeneration initiative aiming to improve the digital footprint of the town by building skills and capacity at a local level. 

In response to COVID19, and using a small grant from Scotland’s Towns Partnership Resilience Fund, the Microbytes programme was designed to run through September 2020 to help develop and promote digital skills across local businesses.

Co-produced with local design company, Tacit-Tacit, and supported by Dunoon Presents BID and Argyll and Bute Council, Microbytes was designed to build business-to-business connections; to highlight local contractors with digital expertise; to provide one-to-one advice; and to help point local businesses towards the most appropriate support and training on offer (across what can be a confusing landscape of regional and national providers).

As part of the flexible programme of community-based support, local businesses were able to access a series of workshops, articles and one-to-one support sessions led by Dunoon-based service providers.  Workshops covering DIY promotional film making; nurturing online communities; and mapping freelance friendly resources across the town have been well received.

First steps have been taken to create a directory of local digital talent able to support businesses with film and photography; websites and graphics; social media campaigns; illustration and animation; developing online shops, etc.

Particularly popular has been the Microbytes Blog, a series of individual interviews with people who manage their own businesses in the Dunoon area.  These provide a fascinating insight into the variety of business stories across the community.  Interviewees talk honestly about some of the challenges they have experienced in learning what digital approach works for them.

The outcomes from Microbytes will be used to inform next steps for this partnership approach to area-based digital development.  For more information contact ann@surf-old.local