Volunteers' Week is an annual celebration of the fantastic contribution millions of volunteers make across the UK, and we would like to take this opportunity to thank our dedicated group of volunteers who work on the Supporting Active Engagement project.
The project aims to teach older people in sheltered housing how to get online using tablet computers and ensure they are receiving the benefits they are entitled to.
We are now in year 3 of our project and 285 older people have attended a 10-12 week digital inclusion course, largely delivered by volunteers. Advice NI couldn’t be happier with the results, and the success of the project is down to our 36 wonderful volunteers who give up their time to travel across Northern Ireland ensuring older people are getting online and staying online.
As a result of the project, the sheltered schemes who have participated in the classes now have Wi-Fi, which has enabled all residents have access to free internet in communal areas to continue their learning and over £400,000 has been generated through previously unclaimed benefits. Volunteering is most definitely a calling and we asked one of longest serving volunteers to tell us what motivates him to give his time to the project.
Name: David McGrath
Where you have volunteered with us?
iPad Tutor (digital champion) East Belfast, Glengormley, Donaghadee
Tell us a bit about what your motivation is/has been for volunteering with us.
Like meeting people, learning new skills, helping older people do all the many many things we take for granted now with our tablets/mobile phones.
What do you think are the benefits of Volunteering?
You can help out people who would otherwise not be able to access services/knowledge and you get to learn new skills or put into practice skills you have learned but rarely get to use, experience is better than theory
Once again thank you to all our volunteers and we look forward to another run of classes with your support.