Dorset Skills and LearningIn 2013, a partnership agreement between Dorset County Council and the Boroughs of Poole and Bournemouth, created a single joint adult skills and learning service, capable of equipping students with many of the basic digital skills necessary for survival in today’s world. This service is known as Skills & Learning Bournemouth, Dorset & Poole. On behalf of the three authorities, the Borough of Poole is responsible for the overall management of the adult learning service. The Skills and Learning service aims to deliver across Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole, professional, high quality learning and training; and it is now one of the biggest providers of education and basic digital skills in the Wessex region.

Skills and Learning Aim: Digital Inclusion For All – Especially Dorset’s Older People

What does that mean… digital inclusion? It means not being left out when it comes to being part of the changing world of new technology, especially getting online. Think for a moment about the possibility of being able to see, hear and communicate with your relatives and loved ones who are living abroad as clearly as if they were in the next room. With digital video calling, you can, and what’s more, you could have this without any costly phone calls. You could catch up with your friends, or make new friends on social media, such as Facebook or Twitter.

Now consider that from the comfort of your Dorset home you could take a ‘virtual’ tour of places you may never visit, or find out more about your favourite hobby, whilst enjoying your favourite brew. And, how about catching up with the TV you’ve missed, without the need to record it? On the web you can digitally download and stream TV shows, films and sports any time you want. You could also browse and get the widest choice of shopping, and the best deals, without getting out your chair. You could even securely check your bank statements, find out about health matters, and even order repeat prescriptions or book an appointment with the Doctor.

Are you one of the seven million people in the UK who have still never been on online? We know it can be daunting; for example in the Wessex region alone, there are approximately 80,000 Dorset residents who have never experienced the digital online world.

Why not come and learn how to improve your computer skills with the assistance of a Wessex Digital Champion? Volunteers with a wide experience of computers are ready and willing to help you learn how to get online, and find out about some of these amazing things yourself. We have sessions in places where you can use the computers and get help for free. Why not give it a try?

Wessex based Dorset Skills and Learning offer a warm, friendly and reliable service to all learners, regardless of age, background or ability.

In the first instance please contact the Project Officer: Paul Hobbins, Routes2Inclusion Project Officer at Landline 01305 225173   Mobile 07766 485439.

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