Two women in a coffee shop. One with disability is using a device to take the customers order.

Recently the digital divide became more apparent than ever. During COVID-19 restrictions, the guidelines requiring people to stay at home meant that undertaking daily errands became incredibly difficult for people without digital connections and access to online services. This article points to supports to connect to in the digital world.

Particularly for the elderly, people with poor literacy, and those in digital blackspots. All those who still paid bills at a local post office, who prefer over the counter banking and shopping locally were incredibly vulnerable. More so, if family members were not living locally to drop care "contact-free" care packages for them.

Recognising this, some organisations announced supports to people to connect in the digital world.

Be Connected.

Be Connected is an Australia-wide initiative giving power to all Australians to thrive in a digital world. They help through online learning guides as well as a network of community partners - the Be Connected Network. They offer in-person support so you can develop your digital skills and confidence.

The Be Connected Partner map on the website has listings of community organisations in the Be Connected Network that all share a desire for digital inclusion. You can use the map to find other organisations near you that partner in the program. Do this by typing in your address or suburb in the search bar on the website and then zoom out using the plus and minus feature in the bottom right-hand corner of the map to find an organisation near you.

Find a local place for help and advice at Be Connected Local Help.

To speak to someone telephone the Be Connected helpline on 1300 795 897. They can also help you find help in your local area. Visit their website Be Connected.

For help in person, visit the Network Partner in your area.

Leep.

Leep usually offers face-to-face digital mentoring programs, so they have adapted to offer free support via phone or video chat. 

Leep connect you to a skilled, patient volunteer "Tech Mate" who guides you to access services and you to stay connected to family and friends. They can also offer help over the phone and through Video conference.

They help with

  • Device and account set up – for mobiles, laptop or personal computers
  • Basic digital skills - texting, emailing and video chatting
  • Accessing your doctor through telehealth
  • Online shopping and banking 
  • Online Government Services

To make an appointment with Leep call 1300 163 106. You can also email on This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit their website leep.

The nbn project.

The npn project created a Digital Capability Tool to help customers better understand and advance their digital skills.

Customers complete a survey and have the options for nbn to forward helpful resources aimed at lifting their digital capability. 

To assess and understand your digital capability, the tool asks a series of questions before assigning a persona to match your current skill level: These personas are - Cautious Adopter, Digitally Responsive, Pragmatist, Problem Solver, Learner, Lifestyler, Visionary or, the most advanced, Digital Leader.

Once the survey is completed, you’ll be guided towards a selected Resource Library containing relevant resources designed to help lift your digital skills to the next level – and further – if you wish.

And you can take the assessment again any time you like to track your progress.

You can read more about The tool to test your digital capability.

 


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