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Age Connects Torfaen digital volunteers making a difference

As part of our work for Volunteers’ Week, we’re profiling the efforts of people who help others to do more online in their spare time.

This time, we’re looking at the work of digital volunteers at Age Connects Torfaen (ACT).

Chris and Charles attend ACT’s Friday morning drop-in session to help older people get the most out of the online world. When we went along to witness a session taking place, there were six learners in the room who all had their own tablet device or laptop. The learners aged in range from 60s to 80s, including one mother and daughter.

We spoke to Susan and Mary, who were among those being helped. Susan was helped to find specific websites, to use Facebook to contact friends, manage photos of holidays and family events, to use Facetime to keep in touch with people and watch TV programmes in iPlayer. She said that Chris and Charles make things easy to understand and that the opportunity for peer learning was important.

Mary told us she was shown how to ask Google questions and to shop online. She said she had used computers in work, but had retired fifteen years ago and needed support as technology had changed so much in that time. Mary said that using her tablet helps to keep her mind sharp, and that attending the sessions was ‘more like a club’ as was not a class or formal. She was amazed how much Chris and Charles knew and that they always had the answer!

You can see Chris and Charles helping out in our digital volunteer video. It was clear that they had a great way with the people in the group, combining a mix of great people skills with a broad knowledge of digital technology and the online world.