Sustaining Scotland’s rural communities.

Who are they?                                                                 

Where are they?

What do they do?
Help communities in rural Scotland to bring about sustainable development projects

How big are they?
A small charity bringing together a network of community organisations and expertise.

What did they receive?
FluidSurveys Pro; Microsoft Office and Windows XP Professional

The outcome?
Detailed surveys and questionnaires can be created and analysed.
The CADISPA Trust is based in Paisley, but works across the breadth of rural Scotland, offering expertise, support and a rigorously analytical approach to communities that are hoping to develop and grow.

Rhona Anderson is the charity’s Company Secretary. “Typically we will work with groups that are seeking to build a new village hall or develop an existing project,” she explains. “ours is a long-term involvement – we will provide support over years and years. But it’s a two way process – we have a social research arm, and over time we aim to gather their story for a case study.” Thus the charity assimilates knowledge and can share paths to success with future clients – its website is full of downloadable resources and examples from draft ‘conditions of hire’ forms to entire business plans and feasibility studies. “We’ll also hold events to bring people together,” continues Rhona. “And we’ll bring experts in to discuss topics such as energy use.”

The charity makes extensive use of FluidSurveys Pro, one of the newer packages available in the CTX catalogue. “Research is our bread and butter,” says Rhona. “We work with a local steering group to design a large questionnaire and then all the information that comes back can be analysed on this software, it’s much better than other packages for analysing research such as SurveyMonkey. CADISPA manages a network of around 55 community groups and more and more of these groups are involved in doing their own surveys – this software is also more cost effective than the others.”

As it was, CTX also provided the Microsoft Office and Windows foundations required to run a modern, efficient small office. Rhona would heartily recommend that other charities look for donations from the programme, and particularly cites the technical support offered. (“I was very impressed.”)

With her background in the university world, Rhona was used to the complexity of academic software; she found that SurveyMonkey and its ilk weren’t up to the sort of work required. FluidSurveys is easy to use and extremely powerful in terms of its analytics, and flexible for the end user.

It’s web based – users can complete the survey by going to a specific URL, which can be password protected or given various other access restrictions. But you can also use it to process and analyse traditional printed survey forms – which is what Rhona’s charity does in the main.

It supports multiple languages, a key requirement for many organisations.
Rhona is passionate about this software’s value to charitable, not for profit organisations. “I’m sure that there are so many more charities that need research to survive,” she says. “FluidSurveys can help.”



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