I started Knowledge Pool with just a laptop and about 20 learners. But three years on, the organisation has supported over one thousand people, donated tens of digital devices and internet access and won many awards.
Why did you start Knowledge Pool?
I wanted to improve the capacity of the people in my community.
Lots of my fellow community members would tell me they were struggling with the internet, having difficulty filling in online forms or sending an email. What seem like basic things to many of us are completely alien to others, so I decided to set up an informal, hour-long ‘class’ after church on a Sunday to try and help. I thought I’d be teaching people how to use Microsoft Office 365, but I quickly realised we would have to start right at the very beginning.
The digital capability support I provide with Knowledge Pool has transformed the lives of a lot of people. For instance, elderly people have gained the skills to connect with their families, parents can help their children with home-schooling, those furloughed gained employability skills, and charity volunteers receive help to better support their organisation.
Your achievements are truly inspirational
You passed your Master’s Degree with Distinction.
You’re a diversity and inclusion lead for a multi-national organisation.
Knowledge Pool won the Craig Macdonald Digital Leaders award in 2021. This national award recognises the impact of grassroots organisations bridging the digital gaps in the community.
You won the award of the best digital training organisation in Yorkshire in 2022.
You are a STEM ambassador and apprenticeship advocate.
And you’re an elected councillor in Doncaster, where you focus on bringing the community together.
What are you most proud of?
Seeing the positive difference the digital capability initiative has made to people’s lives. Housebound and difficult-to-reach people in the community have been given a lifeline.
It brings great joy to see the progress that learners have made and the impact on the lives of digitally excluded people, like the elderly, low-income earners, furloughed, unemployed etc.
Where do you find inspiration and support?
I am a Christian, and my inspiration is usually from the word of God.
I have received support from organisations that provide funding, finances and digital equipment. I have also received support from volunteers who have helped with training and other aspects of our organisation.
Some of the organisation that has supported us are:
UnLTD, Good Things Foundation, Doncaster Council, Digital Leaders, South Yorkshire Community Foundation, Polypipe, Well Doncaster, Murphy, National Lottery Community Fund, Lloyds bank, BT, 3 mobile phone, EE, Vodafone, Google, Sheffield Social Enterprise Network.
What lessons have you learnt along the way?
I have also learnt to be resilient. I’ve encountered a lot of disappointments and refusals, but not allowing that to deter me has resulted in so many positive outcomes.
To find out more about Yetunde and Knowledge Pool visit knowledge-pool.co.uk.
Follow the links to find out about volunteering and donating to help with digital exclusion.