Prewired is an Edinburgh-based programming club for young people under the age of 19. It was launched in 2013 with support and space provided by the University of Edinburgh’s School of Informatics. In 2015, they relocated to CodeBase Edinburgh where they have been based for the last five years. In 2017, Prewired became a Scottish Charity and is managed by a Board of Trustees, most of whom are also actively involved in running sessions. Prewired makes no charge to attendees.
Prewired++ is a response to Covid-19 and will be delivered by Prewired as an organisation, with a project coordinator, supported closely by three trustees. Until Covid-19, Prewired operated on a face-to-face basis with close interaction between young people and volunteers within a safe space. The current crisis has challenged Prewired to recreate that experience online. Prewired++ has 6 mutually-supporting objectives:
- Identify and configure a technology platform to support the transition of Prewired activities online.
- Develop principles and practices for building a vibrant and inclusive online community which encourages creativity, autonomy, mutual respect, and teamwork.
- Design and deliver an extended version of their annual Summer Hack — the Long Thin Summer Hack.
- Build capacity to collect, analyse and understand fine-grained user and activity data via the platform in line with their ethical framework to help inform Prewired’s future growth.
- Ensure existing Prewired policies and mechanisms for data protection and child safeguarding underpin the new platform and associated activities in a robust manner.
- Distil existing expertise and further learning from the project into a portfolio of resources that will be monetised to allow the charity to continue their new trajectory sustainably.
Through the Resident Entrepreneur program, Prewired++ can ensure that their project will allow young people to have a space to be confident in what they love doing, whether it’s learning to code, illustrating websites, or making music for games. Summer Hack will give them the opportunity to showcase their work to the country. By moving online, Prewired++ aims to reach young people who may not have previously accessed Prewired’s services.