The Need

The Charity, Helensburgh Heroes, was founded in the belief that everyone is ‘special’ but that a catalyst is needed to make individuals aware of this.

One such catalyst is the raising of awareness of others associated with the local community who have made a notable achievement as this might inspire others to emulate them while also enhancing their feelings of self-worth –“It doesn’t matter who we are or where we come from we can make a difference.”

Scotland’s vision is for an economy based on highly skilled and better paid jobs, high productivity, fairness, and high quality public services. Recognising that a smarter and more ambitious Scotland is required and that we need to inspire creative, innovative and enterprising people who can succeed in a modern, technology-driven society, the Helensburgh Heroes charity has, after much consultation and research, created a model that will deliver this vision.

The Heroes Centre is a model that combines education/cultural activity with celebration of local achievement, offering meaningful benefits to all members of a local community via an economically sustainable vehicle – with the intention of delivering its first pilot in the Helensburgh area – birthplace of TV/technology pioneer John Logie Baird.

Scotland has a problem.

We are at the start of the second industrial revolution, but this one is not on land it’s in the cloud. As the march of technology continues apace it is widely recognised that we will need a new generation of digitally literate citizens, and yet nearly 33% of Scots are currently missing out on the economic, social and cultural benefits that the internet brings, through lack of access, skills or general literacy, creating a digital divide.

Scotland’s digital exclusion problems are not only restricted to its less fortunate members of society they also affects its young people and small businesses. Over the past five years, the country has witnessed a 13% decline in the numbers of pupils taking IT related subjects at standard and higher levels. Dull and uninspired teaching is the most common reason cited for this decline.

Yet there lies a real opportunity for Scotland if we can successfully re-address this issue.

It is forecast that approximately 38,000 new digital media entrants will be needed by 2015 to meet the increasing level of demand from Scottish employers. In 2013, advertised demand for IT professionals in Scotland has grown by 31% compared with a figure of 21% for the UK as a whole.

Digital empowerment opens employment opportunities for Scotland’s youth, yet many of these roles are being filled abroad.

If the current situation is allowed to continue unabated, Scotland’s wellbeing will be seriously damaged in the future. Delivering formal training in formal establishments during normal working/school hours is not the answer.

We need to put digital engagement at the very heart of our Communities & we need to inspire our communities.