Switched-on solutions for the Youth and Cultural Development Society


When it comes to the latest technology, it often seems the younger you are, the more important it is. Youth and Cultural Development Society work with youth on the daily, which is why they needed switched-on solutions.  
Youth and Cultural Development Society (YCD) has grown since the drop-in centre days of the '90s. YCD now provides a wide range of youth-focused social services all over the Christchurch region. They have a focus on helping disaffected youth find their way in the world. 

The team at YCD help young people to develop essential life skills. As team members are travelling to meet with young people around Christchurch on a daily basis, it's important that their technology is up to date.

To begin with, the team at Spark arranged for a tech review, which involved implementing a range of new systems. To ensure the safety of their team, together with Spark, YCD have put vehicle tracking on their fleet of vehicles. This works alongside a "check-in" system which allows monitoring of staff safety. Both of these pieces of technology gives team leaders that extra peace of mind.

YCD is a non-governmental organisation that liases with funding bodies, local councils and government departments. To streamline paper work and ensure accountability, the team at YCD have implemented Microsoft 365. Microsoft 365 provides collaborative tools that make delivering reports from the road easier.
Implementing Microsoft Teams has also helped improve everyday tasks for YCD. From collaborating on presentations and projects to keeping teams up to date, Microsoft Teams has been a gamechanger. 
"It's fantastic tool – I don’t know how we lived without it. says Melody, team leader at YCD.

 "We can get information out to everyone at once, check-in with each other, check-in with the team not just about keeping their staff safe and connected, but a big part of what their out-reach workers are doing is helping young people connect with their future. Without phones or WiFi at home, many rely on the YCD team to help them.

"YCD is now able to offer an open WiFi network that their guests can access, without worrying about security compromises to their important data."

Another big part of what YCD does is delivering online events. These events create a sense of community, cultural belonging, and a positive place to inspire local young people. It's important YCD has a strong social media presence to reach their audience and stream these online events. 

Social media has also been an important lifeline. During COVID-19 restrictions, social media helped to provide a sense of connection to the youth. The local Spark team has made sure they’ve got gear and coverage that’s up to the job. They have even helped provide giveaways to make the events just that extra bit special.

With YCD finding new ways to connect and deliver their youth services, it’s not just promising for their future, but also the future of young people in Christchurch.

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