Enhancing digital skills and confidence with Digital North Lanarkshire

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A digital inclusion project run in North Lanarkshire has had its first group of learners complete the course – leading the way for residents across the area to get involved and learn new technology skills.

Community inclusion project, Digital North Lanarkshire (Digital NL), is a programme open to residents of North Lanarkshire providing training and access to digital technology – whether they are new to using technology or requiring upskilling in certain areas.

Funded by New College Lanarkshire and North Lanarkshire Community Learning and Development, it seeks to improve the lives of people in North Lanarkshire by increasing their skills and knowledge of digital technology.

Six services users of Routes to Work Ltd., a local service helping unemployed residents in the area access opportunities in education, training and employment, were the first to complete all three stages of the programme to receive the Bronze, Silver and Gold badges.

The group will now be able to share their badges on their CV to help them get into employment.

Julie-Anne Murphy, Skills Facilitator at Routes to Work Ltd., a member organisation of Digital NL, said: “The group from our North Lanarkshire Supported Employment Services have met various barriers in obtaining work, so having the badges and increased confidence from their work with Digital NL will help them get into work.

“Many had a lot of knowledge but no confidence so I am sure this course will make all the difference.”

The group’s success in the programme comes only six months after the launch of the Digital NL website in June 2018, which helps interested members of the community search for digital classes and courses in their area in topics including how to use computers and other digital devices, using the internet and setting up email. Organisations can also become members of the scheme, granting access to technology including iPads and Android devices to help provide digital inclusion services.

Learners can register for a number of classes to help make the most out of technology, while also having access to a bank of iPads and Android devices.

Deborah Mooney, Project Coordinator for Digital NL, said: “Digital NL is an exciting new digital inclusion project which has been hailed a great success by our first six members to achieve all the badges.

“Through a coordinated, partnership-based approach, the project aims to tackle digital exclusion by maximising and bringing together activities which provide access to digital technology. Organisations working in digital inclusion throughout North Lanarkshire can become Digital NL members, enabling them to access support to help maximise the services they provide.

“Around 40 organisations who run digital groups, classes and courses in North Lanarkshire have already signed up to be members and we are delighted to be able to support the vital work they carry out.”

The Digital NL project is due to continue until December 2019 and is open to any resident of North Lanarkshire, community groups and organisations to ensure the people of North Lanarkshire have the skills and confidence to really get the most out of the internet and digital technology.

For more information, visit: www.digitalnl.co.uk or find us on Facebook and Twitter @DigitalNL

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