Could you be described as being more off-line than online? Are your digital skills dusty? Is your computer competence compromised?
If you answered ‘yes’ to any – or all – of the above, the Go On Croydon Digital Day on Saturday 23 July could be just what the doctor ordered.
In addition to enhancing the borough’s reputation as the capital’s fastest-growing tech centre, the council’s Go On Croydon initiative is helping to see that residents are equipped with the confidence and skills needed by everybody in the 21st century to make the most of new technology.
Local research has shown that those with the greatest need tend to be residents in the north of the borough, and low-income households, as well as some 18- to 24-year-olds, and small and medium-sized businesses.
Taking place under a distinctive purple gazebo in North End between 10am and 5pm, the Go On Croydon Digital Day will offer residents the chance to learn online skills, and find out about the benefits of being online. It will also be doing its bit to promote digital inclusion, aiming to open up the online world to everybody in Croydon.
On hand, offering tips, advice and the benefit of their experience, will be representatives of key Go On Croydon partners, including Doteveryone (formerly Go On UK), EE (providing equipment), Argos (providing digital champions) and Age UK, along with council housing service staff, and the Met Police, who will be offering information and advice about staying safe online.
There will also be a pop-up digital zone in the housing one-stop bus, staffed by digital champions, and giving residents an opportunity to learn a few skills and try their hand at going online to flex their new-found digital muscles.
And – the icing on the digital cake – there will be a few giveaways over the course of the day.
Councillor Mark Watson, cabinet member for economy and jobs
“Since opening the Go On Croydon digital zones across the borough last November, we’ve seen many residents come along and discover, for the first time, the huge advantages of being able to confidently go online.
“For the most part, digital zone users initially have very little, or no skills at all, and are reticent or reluctant to go online. Others are keen to go online but have no idea where to start – it’s not uncommon for new users to have never previously used a mouse or keyboard.
“However, after a visit or two, they’ve been able to see how they can save money, search and apply for a job, get in contact with family members or simply do a spot of research on a topic that interests them.
“If anybody knows a friend or relative who could benefit from some digital zone encouragement, I’d ask them to bring this event to their attention.
“We’re confident that, by taking the digital zone out onto a busy shopping street, we’ll be able to connect with even more people and offer them support in gaining basic skills and opening up to them all that the worldwide web offers.”
To learn about Go On Croydon, and how to get involved in your neighbourhood, go to www.croydon.gov.uk.gov/go-on-croydon