Headlines: July 19th, 2010

People living in sheltered housing have been connected to the world wide web and online activities under the Get Digital scheme and now more are being urged to get involved. It is estimated that 4,000 residents have been helped by the grants.

The last of the money under the first stage of the programme has been allocated to 30 sheltered housing schemes in the north of England. It brought the total for England to 402,000 over the past few months. Just over 100 schemes have been awarded up to five thousand pounds each to pay for computers, software, printers and other equipment. IT training for residents is provided by Digital Unite tutors.

Susan Easton, Get Digital project manager, said there was still a chance for landlords and scheme managers to get involved. “There is a second round of applications that closes on September 3rd, “ she said and added: “We are particularly interested in hearing from schemes who have never done anything remotely like this before and that have major reservations about getting involved.” The new round of funding will make money available to another 91 schemes.

Doreen Thomas, from Testway Housing in Hampshire, one of the first schemes to get funding, said: “A Get Digital tutor has worked with our residents at one of our housing for older people schemes in Romsey. It’s already opened up a whole new world for some of them.”