In the year since Stockport Council set up a Digital Inclusion – the DigiKnow Alliance – a network of community support groups has been established across Stockport, making it easier for residents to find help to get online and improve their digital skills in their local community.
The aim of the ‘DigiKnow’ Alliance is to help at least 5,000 people across Stockport increase their confidence and begin using digital technology to make positive changes in their lives. Rather than just offering formal digital skills training, the approach is to deliver digital support and skills through established and trusted community groups and organisations who already provide social support. The Alliance offers training and funding to help them to do this.
So far, 40 digital champions have been trained and 32 community groups and libraries have joined the network, giving support between them to over 2,000 residents.
Councillor Kate Butler, Cabinet Member for Citizen Focus and Engagement says:
“Digital skills can open up new opportunities for people, families and communities, as well as improving the quality of our residents’ lives. It’s not just about having digital skills to find jobs, digital skills also help people stay connected, save money and feel happier and healthier.
“We recognise that those who are digitally excluded are often also socially excluded, so by building digital skills into community organisations that are already trusted by these residents, there is more chance they will be open to new learning and skills. It’s about reducing isolation, giving people across Stockport the same access to opportunities and ensuring no-one gets left behind.”
To find a group who are helping to introduce people to the benefits of being online, look out for the DigiKnow logo or search for digital skills in our online directory: stockport.gov.uk/stockportlocal
Library staff can help you with this too. If you’re a community group who would like to join the DigiKnow community network or if you would like to volunteer as Digital Champion, visit our web-pages: stockport.gov.uk/digiknow
Image caption: DigiKnow Helping Stockport Get Online.