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Origin Leads with the Digital Inclusion Project



Digital skills are a must in the tech-obsessed 21st century and Origin is making sure that no resident is left behind. Our Digital Inclusion Project – run in collaboration with the Government Digital Service (GDS) – offers free 1-to-1 training sessions for people who need support using the computer and internet-enabled devices.

The idea for the service came from GDS staff, who approached Origin looking for volunteering opportunities. The scheme became an immediate success which, in turn, attracted more volunteers. Forty volunteers have now signed up to help and the feedback has been great from both sides.

Poss Apostolou, Head of Delivery Operations for GDS has been volunteering at the sessions:

"I really enjoyed helping people on the scheme, particularly when they get the 'eureka' moment, when you make a breakthrough.”

The project is run every Thursday in our Camden Job Hub and provides digital training tailored to the users’ needs.

Jobseekers will benefit from assistance in formatting their CV, creating email accounts and learning to use email when communicating with their prospective employers. Meanwhile, older users tend to concentrate on learning to access facilities such as online banking, paying their utilities online and keeping in touch with friends and family via email and Skype.

Lidya, one of the users who benefited from the free services said:

“They're great people. They have been encouraging, patient, supportive and caring with me. They really know what they are doing. They have really helped me with my computer skills. If this service wasn’t available I wouldn’t have been able to do some of the things I love.”

Thanks to volunteers from the Government Digital Service, the training is completely free and there is no limit to the amount of training hours a client can receive.  However, due to a high demand, it is necessary to pre-book your session by calling Origin Customer Services on 0300 323 0325.

The project has proven to be a success in Camden and the team are looking to extend it to Enfield and Stevenage next year.

Two men sitting at the table looking at a laptop