Link signs SCVO Digital Participation Charter

PrintAs part of its commitment to helping its tenants get online Link Group Ltd has become the latest signatory of the SCVO Digital Participation Charter.

The charter commits Link to five promises, including ensuring all staff and volunteers have an opportunity to learn basic digital skills and pass these skills onto others in the local community. Link joins over 100 other organisations such as Asda, BT, NHS 24 and the University of Edinburgh as signatories of the charter.

Link signed up to the charter as part of its commitment to helping to get online not only tenants themselves but also the communities in which they live.

A recent customer satisfaction survey revealed that only 52 per cent of Link tenants were online with that number dropping to 28 per cent for those aged over 65 and 34 per cent for tenants with a disability. Many of our tenants experience considerable barriers to both using computers and getting online, resulting in a large percentage not benefitting from the many advantages to owning and using a computer, the skills required to use one, and having access to the internet. Tenants identified home internet connection as being too expensive and 56 per cent said that access to an internet enabled device would overcome this barrier. 40 per cent of those who do not access the internet identified themselves as lacking skills or knowledge as a barrier.

To overcome the barriers highlighted and to assist our tenants where possible, Link embarked on an ambitious programme of digital inclusion. This programme including digital roadshows, computer training, techy tea parties, a laptop and tablet loan scheme and access to low-cost broadband, all of which have since helped over 200 people.

Recently, 40 Link tenants completed the City and Guilds ICT Basic Online course. This 13 week course covers digital inclusion, employability, and financial capability. Match funded by SCVO, Digital Scotland and the European Regional Development Fund, tenants had the opportunity to sit the City & Guilds ICT Basics Online exam and also keep the laptop on which they trained at the end of the course. This course has been extremely successful and is being run again in May for another 20 Link tenants.

Link will also be allowing community organisations free use of its IT training suite at its premises in Dalmuir (The Bruach) as part of its commitment to the charter.

Craig Sanderson, chief executive Link Group Ltd, said: “We are pleased to support SCVO’s initiative to promote digital participation and basic digital skills in Scotland. By signing the Charter we have demonstrated our commitment to helping our tenants access employment, advice, information, support and services online.”

Chris Yiu, director of Digital Participation, SCVO, added: “We are delighted that Link Group Ltd has signed the Digital Participation Charter. Link is engaging in a wide range of digital inclusion activity, demonstrating a strong commitment to helping their tenants get online. We look forward to working with them to promote digital participation amongst the wider community and pursue our shared ambition of making Scotland a world-leading digital nation.”



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