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Bridging the Digital Divide

The West of England Rural Network and the Avon Local Councils’ Association are developing an initiative ‘to help people engage online’ by learning basic IT skills to enhance access to shopping and services, medical support, and social contacts with friends and family. The programme, which will run from January to June 2022, may include:

  • ‘Tea and tech’ computer familiarisation in a friendly and relaxing setting;
  • ‘Zoom booths’ in community buildings where people can use technology in  a safe setting – because they don’t have the technology or the space at home;
  • Simple improvements such as better WIFI connection or audio visual equipment to enable more people to get engaged (funds are limited).

So far the focus has mainly been on older people but the organisers see the programme as relevant also to younger people including those seeking employment. The organisers aim to do most of the organisation centrally, including technical support. They are looking for enthusiastic support at community level: a suitable venue, some volunteer support and especially help to get people to come along.

If you are interested in taking part, please contact dick@wern.org.uk