Mark



                   

Mark







PETER GRANT
(WSX Enterprise)



When did you start working as a partner in the PONToon project, and what encouraged you to get involved?

WSX Enterprise was there at the very start of PONToon when Joan Farrer (PONToon Principal Investigator and Lead Partner) and I were sitting in a café discussing how we could build further the success of the Interreg BRIDGE project. As the months went by, driven by Solene who was a very adept EU consultant we both knew, PONToon emerged.



Describe the success of the project in three words.
Taking down barriers.




As the project draws to a close, is there a particular memory you will carry with you?

Two - one is sitting on a settee in a French hotel with some partners literally designing the entrepreneurship aspect and training seminar to meet partners/beneficiaries needs - inspiring! Secondly what can be achieved by an active partnership on a transnational basis. It feels like we have more than scratched the surface. But with a project that actually can affect people’s lives in a positive way there is so much we could do to roll out the approach to help women on a wider basis.


A black and white watercolour illustration of 3 people sitting around a table. Behind this image is a blue, abstract, curved shape

FLAVIA CIONTU
(GIP-FCIP de l'académie de Caen)



When did you start working as a partner in the PONToon project, and what encouraged you to get involved?

In December 2019, when I started my job as a project manager at GIP Normandy. I was instantly drawn in by the objectives of PONToon and the dynamic team that worked towards them.



The PONToon project programme has enabled training exploring new digital technologies for over 1500 women in France and England. Did your organisation focus most on working with women locally, regionally, or bi-nationally?

We mostly worked with women regionally, more specifically in Normandy (Caen/Hérouville Saint Clair, Argentan, Avranches, Bayeux, Saint-Lô). This allowed us to reach women from both rural and urban areas.



Two of the project’s aims are to promote digital upskilling for women, and to secure their professional integration. How did you prioritise these aims?

First, we supported beneficiaries by organizing digital upskilling workshops (on topics such as video-making) and by involving them in the development of the PONToon digital toolkit. Second, we collaborated with the Normandy Regional Council programme #AVENIR, which seeks to help adults in their professional reorientation and integration. As part of this, GIP supported the creation of mini-enterprises inside the training centres as a way of developing entrepreneurship and transversal skills. 



One red thread in the project workshop programme is photography and film. In the current moment, we think that being able to make images is perhaps more important than ever. Which image-making workshop hosted by another partner would you have most liked to have attended, and why?

I would’ve loved attending Linda Mason’s workshop on filmmaking during the virtual event, PONToon: A Success Story. Unfortunately, I couldn’t since I was involved in the organisation of the event, but I took a look at her presentation available at event.pontoonproject.eu/en/. It contains lots of helpful resources.



Describe the success of the project in three words.
Empowerment, growth, cooperation.




As the project draws to a close, is there a particular memory you will carry with you?

Maybe the testimony of one of our beneficiaries, who was completely uncomfortable with technology before our video-making workshop and who, by the end of the three sessions, filmed and edited a beautiful interview.





HARRY USBORNE
(Eastleigh Borough Council)



When did you start working as a partner in the PONToon project, and what encouraged you to get involved?

Our involvement with PONToon started prior to the launch. One thing that initially stoked our interest in the project was its focus on digital technology. Much of Eastleigh Borough Council’s previous work around arts, culture and heritage explored digital technology such as virtual reality, as well as more conventional digital platforms such as social media, as a way to make information accessible and engaging. Our familiarity with the technology aspect of PONToon, coupled with the communications skills we were in a position to provide, meant that the project seemed like an obvious fit.



The PONToon project programme has enabled training exploring new digital technologies for over 1500 women in France and England. Did your organisation focus most on working with women locally, regionally, or bi-nationally?

Due to our role as the communications lead for PONToon, much of our work on the project took a wide angle, focusing on raising awareness of the project and engaging with audiences internationally. For example, in most cases, the online and marketing content we produced for the project were provided in both English and French languages, and was created with the intention of informing as many people about the project as possible, regardless of their locale. That being said, we were also involved in outreach and upskilling at a local level, running a series of workshops over the course of the project to provide digital skills and employment support to disadvantaged women. We also arranged several sessions to test the PONToon digital tools locally.



Two of the project’s aims are to promote digital upskilling for women, and to secure their professional integration. How did you prioritise these aims?

One of the key ways we aimed to provide digital upskilling and employment support for disadvantaged women was by contributing to the development of the PONToon digital toolkit. In much the same way as other project partners we contributed to initial discussions around concepts for the digital tools, and also played our part in the feedback process by testing the tools with both stakeholders and beneficiaries. We also took a more direct approach by hosting a series of workshops delivered by stakeholders and freelance experts. These workshops were a modest but highly valued part of our work on PONToon, covering a wide range of skills such as digital marketing, programming and useful business skills.



One red thread in the project workshop programme is photography and film. In the current moment, we think that being able to make images is perhaps more important than ever. Which image-making workshop hosted by another partner would you have most liked to have attended, and why?

The film and photography workshops run by Aspex and led by documentary filmmaker Linda Mason were a prime example of how to engage socially disadvantaged women with digital technology. The creative focus was a fantastic carrier for delivering useful skills that could be easily transferred to a wide variety of employment, entrepreneurial and artistic contexts. We were particularly impressed by the agile nature of Aspex’s workshops, as evidenced by the workshop leader tailoring specific support for one of the workshop participants who was looking to create work for her own business. Seeing the clear benefit of this kind of flexibility was a big learning point for us, and something that we then aspired to provide in our upskilling workshops.

TRISTAN MONTIGNY
(Amiens Métropole)



When did you start working as a partner in the PONToon project, and what encouraged you to get involved?

Amiens Métropole has engaged in the PONToon project since the launch of the project in 2015/2016. Unemployment is a particular concern in Amiens, Picardy: the employment rate and average time spent in unemployment is higher in Picardy than it is nationally in France. The region Hauts-de-France is the French region most affected by unemployment (12.8% in 2015) and women are more less likely to have part-time jobs than men, but these figures also apply to Picardy. The city of Amiens needed to take action in order to tackle unemployment issues additionally to reduce disparity between men and women. The innovative tools created by PONToon to support women in their job search was seen as an opportunity to support our beneficiaries.



The PONToon project programme has enabled training exploring new digital technologies for over 1500 women in France and England. Did your organisation focus most on working with women locally, regionally, or bi-nationally?

As a local authority, Amiens Métropole has focused on delivering local training. We implemented a project in an urban area comprising 39 towns. The main challenge for us was to promote the project to local training centres. Indeed, Amiens Métropole manages the PLIE scheme (Local Scheme for Inclusion and Employment). The department service conducted training courses for beneficiaries. Since 2017, the coordination of training courses has been delegated to employment and inclusion organisations. The challenge was therefore to make them aware of our approach in order to be able to implement a new methodology and as a result to remain involved in the PONToon project. This new collaborative approach has led to the training of 48 women, 37 men and 4 trainers.



One red thread in the project workshop programme is photography and film. In the current moment, we think that being able to make images is perhaps more important than ever. Which image-making workshop hosted by another partner would you have most liked to have attended, and why?

Amiens Métropole didn’t provide such training workshops. However, we were inspired by the project ideas of Eastleigh Borough Council. We identify easily to Eastleigh Borough Council as it is also a local authority and deals with the same responsibilities and scope of intervention. The photography project is inspiring and creative and could be replicated with the help of local partners.



As the project draws to a close, is there a particular memory you will carry with you?

I will keep a special memory from the last training course that we ran. While offering feedback on the training course, one beneficiary indicated that she already began to apply what she had learned at home, by searching jobs on the internet or by looking for useful information at job centers. She even prepared for a job interview with her baby! That was the best evidence that this training helps.







OLIVIA CRAIG
(Devon Mind)



When did you start working as a parter in the PONToon project, and what encouraged you to get involved?

We were involved with the project from its inception. It felt like a really good fit with the work we do at Mind, supporting people to recover from mental ill-health. We work with cohorts of women in Plymouth who have complex needs and we felt they would benefit from being involved with PONToon.



One red thread in the project workshop programme is photography and film. In the current moment, we think that being able to make images is perhaps more important than ever. Which image-making workshop hosted by another partner would you have most liked to have attended, and why?

Any of the workshops hosted by Aspex Gallery! Their work was really quite visually empowering. It shows how we can work in more non-traditional ways when supporting beneficiaries, other than the ‘desk and white board’ approach.



Would you describe your experience working with the project as an organisation as independent, or collaborative?

I think these sorts of projects require a mixture of both experiences: independent activity bespoke to what each partner does and what their beneficiaries need, but also collaborative activity which involves sharing best practices and new ideas between partners.



As the project draws to a close, is there a particular memory you will carry with you?

I thought the augmented reality event (PONToon: A Success Story) was a unique example of how we can still engage in a virtual space. We all had our own Avatar!



CHARLOTTE FOTSE
(ADICE)



The PONToon project programme has enabled training exploring new digital technologies for over 1500 women in France and England. Did your organisation focus most on working with women locally, regionally, or bi-nationally?

ADICE promoted new digital technologies to dozens of women from Pas-de-Calais, France. All the female job-seekers from the Hauts-de-France region who met at ADICE have been trained on the PONToon digital toolkit and several have given positive feedback on their usefulness in their reconnection with the job market and the digital world.



Would you describe your experience working with the project as an organisation as independent, or collaborative?

As an association, ADICE took part in discussions, exchanged contributions and tested the digital toolkit, as well as organising those training sessions in the Hauts-de-France region. We also produced a video explaining the Career Guide app.



Describe the success of the project in three words.
Employability, digital autonomy.




As the project draws to a close, is there a particular memory you will carry with you?

During one workshop at the beginning of the project, one participant was stressed because she thought the workshop would be a graded numerical test, like in school. At the end of the workshop and app testing, she enjoyed using the toolkit so much that she didn't want to stop! She explained that it was one of the first times she felt comfortable using computer skills.


A black and white watercolour illustration of 3 people standing under a giant desk lamp. Behind this image is a orange, abstract, curved shape.









ILLUSTRATION

Ruth Alderton - Home page characters 

Kevin Dean - Watercolour and line drawings



ANIMATION


Beth Ewen - Learn page animations



GAME DESIGN

Keiken (Tanya Cruz, Hana Omori, Isabel Ramos)

Video footage used:

‘Feel My Metaverse’ in collaboration with George Jasper Stone

‘Metaverse: We are at the end of Something’ in collaboration with Ryan Vautier and Sakeema Crook



PHOTOGRAPHY

Linda Mason 
 


GRAPHIC DESIGN

Sasha Damjanovic - “We Love” sticker collection
                              Fixed navigation bar

Hannah Buckingham - Introduction pages buttons
                                 Tree diagrams



WEB DEVELOPMENT

Rowan Lear 

Sasha Damjanovic

Alice Karsten

Hannah Buckingham

Vera Hadzhiyska


 
CONTENT PRODUCTION

Hannah Buckingham - Keiken Interview Feature 

Alice Karsten -  Explore title videos

Sasha Damjanovic - “We Love” sticker collection

Vera Hadzhiyska

Ellie Higgins

Eleanor Harwood-Todd



PHOTO EDITING

Alice Karsten

Hannah Buckingham

Sasha Damjanovic

Vera Hadzhiyska



VIDEO EDITING

Alice Karsten

Linda Mason



AUDIO EDITING

Alice Karsten

Hannah Buckingham



COPYWRITING


Ellie Higgins

Eleanor Harwood-Todd

Vera Hadzhiyska

Hannah Buckingham

Alice Karsten

Sasha Damjanovic



FEATURED BENEFICIARIES

Keiken (Tanya Cruz, Hana Omori, Isabel Ramos)

Olufolake ‘Flo’ Ayeyemi



FEATURED COLLABORATORS

boredomresearch (Vicky Isley and Paul Smith)

Carolyn Watt

Pell Ensemble

U Can Too



ALT TEXT

Alice Karsten  

Hannah Buckingham



SYMPOSIUM CONTRIBUTORS

Nadine Hagen

Samantha Harvey

Claire Udy

Sylvia Denham

Louis Netter

Sarah Cheverton

Amanda Garrie

Erika Hughes

Alison Habens



PONToon PARTNERS

ADICE

Amiens Métropole

Aspex

Devon Mind

Digital Peninsula Network

Eastleigh Borough Council

GIP-FCIP de l'académie de Caen

University of Portsmouth

WSX Enterprise

TRAJECTIO



SPECIAL THANKS

Joanne Bushnell

Vicky Chapter

Harriet Carr

Vickie Fear

Ollie Neale

Harry Scott

Sophie Brown