Jerry was made redundant from a long term job which didn’t require him to use technology very often. He didn’t really use it much in his personal life either. His work coach at the Job Centre referred him to Digital Brighton & Hove for support to develop digital skills. He found a new job in a supermarket but called on Digital Brighton & Hove when his payslips began to be issued online. Jerry wasn’t familiar with navigating the internet and he had forgotten his login details for the employee work portal. For starters, our digital champion Jo helped him to reset his password and log back into the portal.
After his first meeting with Jo he said that he had no other use for his laptop really and didn’t need it for anything else other than viewing his payslips. But then he heard colleagues talking about a function where they were able to search for other jobs within the company in different locations, Jerry was keen to take a look and see if there were any openings closer to where he lived. So he arranged another support session with Jo for support.
Jo spent time supporting him to navigate these pages so Jerry learnt simple but essential skills such as using a search bar, scrolling down a page, and closing down a webpage. Jo found out that Jerry was interested in boxing and martial arts so she showed him how to find footage of these sport using YouTube. The cookies warning pop-ups inevitably started to appear when browsing these websites. Jo explained to Jerry what cookies were, which helped to put his mind at rest as they had caused him confusion in the past. Again, this gave him confidence and a sense of control that he didn’t have at the beginning.
Jerry described the liberation that this knowledge of knowing how to close down a webpage and navigate the internet had given him. Previously when using technology Jerry described feeling ‘like he had done something wrong’ when he ended up on an unfamiliar webpage and how he would feel frustrated and end up closing the laptop and walking away.
After familiarising himself with his laptop during our sessions and in his spare time, by just the third session Jerry wanted to apply for a residents parking permit which can now only be done online. Far from feeling hopeless about the fact that this was the only option available, he now felt confident that he could attempt to do this, with Jo by his side for any needed guidance and support. In order to apply for the permit Jerry first had to create an account with the Council which was another great learning experience for him using online searches, navigating websites, online form filling and using google password manager.
The next task was to upload paper copies of the supporting documents required needs for the permit application and to save them as files on his laptop. These are skills that experienced users of technology take for granted but are vital for a new digital user to access essential services. Jerry is mastering these skills with the patience and dedicated support of Jo.
If you or someone you know needs similar support or please call 0808 196 5883, text 07575977345.
If you would like to volunteer to help people like Jerry, please complete the form here and one of our Digital Champion Coordinators will be in touch.