In Plymouth, BT, Plymouth City Council, Plymouth Community Healthcare, Jobcentre Plus and Citizens Online are working together to run the Get IT Together Programme, a community development approach to digital inclusion.
As part of Get Online Week, Get IT Together – Plymouth worked with Plymouth Citizens Advice Bureau and Plympton Library to help local residents learn basic IT skills and shop online for the best deals. Learners were also shown the best ways to stay safe online as many of them had expressed concerns about online fraud.
Katie Roberts-Clarke from Plymouth Citizens Advice Bureau said, ‘we want to be proactive in helping people protect their details online and this is a good way to do it. If we can prevent problems arising in the first place that is much better for that person as identity theft and online fraud can be very distressing.’
Steve Cookson, a volunteer with the Plymouth project helped deliver the course. He said, ‘this is a really good opportunity for people to learn about shopping online in the run up to Christmas. People really can get cheaper deals, which is really important nowadays, but they also need to learn how to protect their details.’
The aim is to carry on running these courses so that more people can benefit and save money. With more and more transactions being conducted online, courses such as these can help consumers to learn about online shopping and how to save money by banking online, switching suppliers, using public services and accessing online health services.
Councillor Pete Smith, Deputy Leader of the Council, commented “Get IT Together – Plymouth is all about getting more Plymouth residents online and open to new opportunities.
This is an extremely important project for Plymouth in so many ways. Around 38,000 homes are not connected to the internet and we need to do all we can to make sure people are not left behind in terms of opportunities for education, work, access to council and health services.
By working with our partners, these sessions are helping those who are nervous about using the internet to find their way around and feel more at ease with this technology. They need to know it need not be scary and can be extremely useful.”
Get IT Together in Plymouth is supported by BT’s Connected Society programme, BT’s commitment to help people right around the world gain the skills and confidence they need to join the online community and Plymouth City Council, Plymouth Community Healthcare, Jobcentre Plus.
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