Finalist category: Digital Volunteer of the Year Award
Digital Volunteer of the Year, Finalist, 2019
Sam works tirelessly as a volunteer for Money Advice Hub and deploys all of her IT skills for the benefit of the organisation.
Sam is an accredited Google Educator and has used these skills to build Money Advice Hub professional intranets, an amazing public website and a case management system. She has also designed innovative online tools for the benefit of clients, has the ability to source free tech for clients and not-for-profit organisations, and tirelessly champions Digital Citizens.
Sam has dedicated at least two years of her life to provide Money Advice Hub the amazing systems they now have – without her, the organisation couldn’t afford such sophisticated cloud systems. At their audit last year, the site assessor called their IT systems ‘exceptional’. Not only has Sam developed all their Google cloud G suite infrastructure, she has also used that same expertise to help hard-to-tech clients access and use free tech tools to organise their lives better. The response has been amazing. One gentleman commented “if you can teach me to use a smartphone, you can teach anyone”.
Not only all of this, Sam has made another amazing innovation – their trademarked Debtipedia ® public advice resource, launched in 2019. Open to anyone, the resource has over 100 topics covering debt advice, housing, money advice, well-being & digital citizens. The potential of this resource, as an easily recognised brand, is massive and will help thousands of organisations that may not have the funds to create something similar. Sam also developed the first Debt Club toolkit, the first debt advice journey resource for the public & the first debt advice passport in the sector – all online empowerment tools for clients.
Sam’s sheer determination to create the most amazing tools and resources with no budget at all is simply awe inspiring. She has put hours and hours into volunteering, working at weekends and late into the early hours. She developed herself into an accredited Google Educator and has used these skills to find the best and most affordable way forward for the organisation.
Sam has been able to bring free digital technology into the lives and homes of hard to reach individuals. Sam has also shared her tech and specialist device knowledge to other organisations and the general public, with the potential to reach and help millions.The potential of Debtipedia ® alone is huge and will be widely advertised past its Beta phase. Sam is currently working on e-learning resources as she has passed further training to develop online e-learning. Sam just doesn’t stop trying to improve lives with digital technology. To find a way to help reduce poverty and indebtedness, increase skills & resilience and improve wellbeing and self confidence.
Most of all, Sam must be highly commended for her desire to share her hard work by making the most amazing resources public for all to access and use. Sam is a wonderful, creative individual, the team call her their ‘Geek Chic’.