Wales Co-op Centre launches new digital inclusion programme

A new digital inclusion programme managed by the Wales Co-operative Centre is to receive £2 million in funding from the Welsh government.

The existing scheme Communities 2.0, which was designed by the government in 2009, has been managed by the Co-op Centre and has so far helped 60,000 Welsh citizens in accessing digital services.

The current scheme, which delivered online services to three times more people than the government had initially targeted, is set to finish by the end of the month,.

The new Digital Communities Wales project will build upon the groundwork set out by Communities 2.0. Lesley Griffiths, minister for communities and tackling poverty, commented: “The new programme will build on the success of Communities 2.0 and help more people to benefit from using the internet.

It is vital we continue digital inclusion activities so everyone has the opportunity to improve their lives through the use of technology – whether it’s buying goods and services more easily and for lower prices, accessing public services or increased employment opportunities.”

Digital Communities Wales will run for two years, with the provision for a two year extension and will provide training and support to over 400 organisations across the public, private and non-profit sectors.

The project is targeting digital inclusion for 15,000 people each year for its duration, prioritising those over 50, with disabilities, unemployed or living in social housing.

Derek Walker, chief executive of the Wales Co-operative Centre, said: “We are looking forward to working with colleagues across the country to implement digital inclusion measures where they are most needed.”

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