Service update during Covid-19
Our digital inclusion drop-in sessions are unfortunately on hold for the protection of our volunteers and the people they support. We are now offering digital support by telephone for any Norwich resident needing assistance to get the most out of technology whilst social distancing. To be eligible for telephone support, learners must have access to the internet at home, a device to connect to the internet and some prior experience of going online.
To request assistance or to make a referral please email our Digital Inclusion Volunteer Co-ordinator Alex Stapleton on call him on 07384 113998.
Please be aware that the majority of Voluntary Norfolk staff are continuing to work from home.
Voluntary Norfolk’s digital inclusion work helps people in Norwich, Broadland, Great Yarmouth and South Norfolk to develop the skills, capabilities and confidence to access online services, support and activities and increase their independence, wellbeing and resilience.
The internet and digital technologies provide a lifeline for people who find themselves physically and emotionally isolated. With more than 1 in 10 adults never having been online, supporting people to develop digital skills can make a real difference in the local community. We work with volunteers who coach local residents to gain new skills and confidence with digital technologies, to help tackle social isolation.
Our volunteers have the option of working one-to-one with the learner in their home, at a scheduled drop-in session in the city or over the telephone. They can use a device that the learner owns or, if they live in Norwich, one that has been borrowed from a Digital Stuff Hub. The Digital Stuff Hubs loan out tablets, laptops and MiFis (mini WiFi routers provided by EE the mobile phone provider and on a SIM contract), which allow those without a device to access the internet and perform digital tasks without having to buy one first. This is particularly handy if the learner wants to understand how to use a device before they buy or if they only need one for a short period of time.
What is a Digital Inclusion Volunteer?
People can lack experience or confidence with digital technologies for a variety of reasons relating to age, health, education or income. We connect people with volunteers who coach and support them to develop their confidence and ability to use digital technologies.
Our volunteers work with clients to identify the goals that are important to them, whether that be budgeting or keeping in touch with friends and relatives. The support volunteers provide can involve activities like teaching how to send an email, use a search engine, or fill out an online form.
Thanks to our volunteers, people who may have never used a computer, tablet or other communication device have the chance to learn something new. Working one-to-one with residents and support groups in the community, our volunteers enable people to lead fuller, more independent lives.
You don’t need advanced IT skills to become a Digital Inclusion volunteer; it is more important to have good interpersonal skills, patience and the an enthusiasm for supporting people.
If you are interested in becoming part of our team of Volunteers, sign up via our Better Impact volunteer registration portal.