I want change. Show me how.

It is often the case we do not get what we feel we deserve or that there is more that can be done. During these times, it is incredibly difficult to stop yourself falling into a spiral of demotivation and a feeling of despair. Not-for-profit social enterprise, MySociety, gives the UK’s public access to online tools so that real change is no longer a fantasy.

We believe
… that strong democratic accountability and a thriving civil society are vital to our common welfare, and that these only survive when people engage with government and communities.

We work with online technologies
… because the internet can lower the barriers to taking the first civic or democratic steps in a citizen’s life, and it can do so at scale.

In three connected areas of civic life
– Our Transparency services make it easy for citizens to surface information
– Our Democracy tools help people hold their parliaments to account
– Our Community technologies empower local authorities and residents to make improvements in their own neighbourhoods.

MySociety, mysociety.org

You hardly hear about a practical means of impacting decisions which seem to be determined by an elite group of people sitting in an ivory tower. MySociety is groundbreaking in this respect. Chief Executive, Mark Cridge, is driving away the stigma that as members of the public, we are just bystanders to what our government decides to do or not do. They believe we are active citizens who deserve the right to make a difference and not just mark X on the piece of paper going into the ballot box.

Online technologies are endless. Some are futile, some fun, but some, like the tools MySociety has built, are powerful. Powerful enough to create real change for civilian life through research, partnerships, local goverment support, international collaboration and a passion to increase the impact any one citizen can have.

SDG 16, Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions is one of the harder goals to achieve because of the number of dependencies its progress relies on. Dependencies on government, on large corporations, on smaller businesses, on legal and justice systems and most importantly, the dependency on us. Though, not us as bystanders, but as civilians who strive for better. Thanks to MySociety, we now have tools to help us achieve this.

Specifically within SDG 16, they progress target 16.6, to develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions, target 16.7, to ensure responsive, inclusive and representative decision-making and 16.10, to ensure public access to information and protect fundamental freedoms.

Let’s hope MySociety continue to grow the reach of their impact and the development of their civic technologies, so that the feeling of despair when decisions do not go your way can be acted on and not left to manifest itself into something far worse! Learn more about this awesome enterprise on their website linked below.

Links:

MySociety Website
mysociety.org

CrowdJustice.

The thought of having to pay large sums of money for legal services, especially when you feel you have done no wrong or have had unavoidable circumstances, can be one the most demoralising feelings. There’s no substitute for strong legal support but access to this eludes many and so many are left feeling defeated by the justice system – a feeling nobody wants to experience. If only there was a way to change this. Cue: CrowdJustice.

CEO, Julia Salasky, set up Legl after leaving the UN with a mission to make the law work better for everyone. Their flaghip product, crowdfunding platform CrowdJustice, was set up in 2015 by a team of outstanding lawyers determined to make fundraising for legal issues no longer an obstacle for those who need it the most. On the platform you can decide whether you want to make your legal issue public or private, launch a campaign within 24 hours and then begin receiving funding from the public or a private group of people. It sounds so simple and that’s because it is.

The impact of Legl’s flagship product is not only evident through the £10 million they have raised in funding so far or the 80% funding success rate of over 500 campaigns, but also through its recognition within the Legal industry, winning the Technology Product of the Year (2019), by “The Lawyer”. Once you take a look at their success stories, it won’t take you long to see why they came first.

This company is one of a few companies that make tangible progress towards SDG 16 Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions, and it is inspiring to see how many lives they have positively impacted through the funds compliantly raised on the platform and the ongoing legal support they give to those who run campaigns. Learn more about Crowdjustice and the team at Legl who make successful outcomes of the law more of a reality for those who need it most.