A group of residents at Roanheads Sheltered Housing Scheme have just completed a ten-week Digital Inclusion course to help them make better use of “smart” gadgets such as mobile phones and tablets.
Liz Cameron from Aberdeen Foyer worked with five residents, developing learning plans to meet their individual needs. Using a combination of one-to-one sessions in their homes and group sessions in the common roomm.
Participants were able to work at their own pace and practice at home, with Liz always on hand to provide advice and support. Areas covered included internet browsing, Facebook, Skype, banking, online shopping, photography, games and staying safe when using the internet.
Resident Elizabeth Forman said: “I really enjoyed the course and I got such a lot out of it. Liz was fantastic – she made everything easy to learn and a lot of fun. If I can learn to use the internet and skype, others can too.”
Margaret McCallum, who also took part in the project said she had joined Facebook and was amazed at what happened next.
“My cousin in America contacted me and we haven’t seen each other in almost 30 years. I’m catching up with lots of lost relatives – it’s fantastic!”
Ted Watkins from Aberdeen Foyer described the project as “an excellent example of partnership working in the community. Working with the group has given us a better understanding of the needs and concerns of older and vulnerable people around digital technology. We now have a project model which we can replicate and use with other similar groups.”
Eleanor McEwan, Community Development Manager for Sanctuary Scotland said: “One of our priorities is to support older and vulnerable people to access digital technology and the benefits it can offer. We’re delighted at the success of the project and how much the group have benefited from it.”
The end of the project was celebrated with a wonderful coffee morning in the common room where the participants were awarded with Certificates of Achievement.
The group is now feeling so confident with their new found knowledge that they are planning to continue meeting weekly in the common room to keep on learning and supporting each other.