DECA’s backbone role, Community Manager and Equity Advocate, and the wider DECA team, including Stewardship Group members, identify gaps and problem solve issues, source stories of the great work being done in the digital inclusion community to share on our community channels and enewsletters. We connect people and projects, develop resources and tools, organise events, sit in regular DIA and MoH meetings and associated advocacy and policy work. This can be as part of a working group, as individuals or pairs.
Stewardship Group members are also the main point of contact and/or support to Constellations or parallel processes/community-led work in development. We work hard to bring lived experience stories to decision making spaces and to ensure diverse voices are heard and valued for their time and experience.
Trust-based Community-led processes in development
DECA is supporting Māori-for-Māori and Pacific Digital Equity Parallel Processes. These are funded community-led trust based mahi, connected to Pacific and Tangata Whenua Stewardship Group members and seen as a vital part of the coalition’s establishment phase.
Hearing the stories of digital inclusion needs in COVID lockdown, DECA called a Lockdown Emergency Response Hui on the 8th of September. Over 100 people - from the digital inclusion community, key government people, corporates and passionate individuals - participated in this hui identifying current digital exclusion issues and potential solutions. A more focussed hui, Digital Inclusion and Devices, followed. This mahi is now a committed group meeting monthly to work toward digital equity specific to devices.
You can find the letter DECA sent to Ministers and the summaries from these key meetings here:
The constellation model is a decentralised approach to change-making where different individuals and organisations work together to help solve a common problem. Members organise themselves around issues and initiatives of common interest and leverage the strengths and resources of each other. These groups are called constellations. This is where the work happens.
The highly consultative process of establishing DECA settled on a light touch governance model with the vital work being community-led and happening in constellations - self-organising working groups of individuals and organisations aligned with DECA kaupapa, focussed on digital equity issues.
Constellations are spaces for collaborative work enabling more sustainable impact as a collective.
Key to effective constellation work is developing systems and culture that grow healthy cross-sector collaboration. Individuals and organisations engaged in constellations are Members or Friends of DECA.
To address historic and current imbalances in power and trust issues, DECA asks Friends of DECA (Central or local government agencies, corporates) who want to seed a constellation, to partner with two community organisations.
We see that group of three as a solid base to grow the Constellation community from. From trial (and error!) we have learnt that to be truly collaborative, working together needs to emerge from initial exploratory issue-based hui - which DECA can help organise.
Constellation Leads are the interface between the backbone of DECA and the Constellation mahi and the contact point for others wanting to engage.
HOW TO CONNECT IN
You can find information on two of the emerging constellations below.
Other constellation ideas in discussion are Accessible Digital Trainings, Digital Access and Skills, Digital Seniors and a Resource Innovation Constellation.
Get in touch here to start a conversation about seeding or getting involved in existing constellations.
The Affordable Connectivity Constellation is an emerging constellation in seeding stage.
Led by key players in the digital equity community dismayed at the worsening of the digital divide due to COVID-19 lockdowns. An Affordable Connectivity hui is planned to discuss the challenges in accessing affordable connectivity, what affordable connectivity looks like and whether a DECA constellation could help to advocate for equitable and affordable connectivity.
Ako Ōtautahi Learning City Christchurch (AO-LCC) is growing a learning ecosystem with a focus on equity, access and innovation.
The Digital Equity Group is a key focus within the regional portfolio of work AO-LCC undertakes. Within the last couple of years it has aided in local groundswell and growth of key influencers and contacts who are interested in the digital equity landscape. This collective has been actively growing the conversation, engaging the evolving narrative, through connect labs, panel discussions and workshops.
The Group has begun mapping what is happening in the digital equity space, exploring the use of tools that link with national, regional, and global strategies, whilst recognising the complexity of the space. This growing body of knowledge will be shared as an emerging framework with the whole DECA network so that we learn together, reduce noise in the system, seek collective outcomes, and explore opportunities to co-create on the regional level.