Bridging the digital divide

The focus of the Social Justice Small Grants Program for 2020 was to address digital exclusion for marginalised groups in the community. Carers of Africa received a small grant to fund a project to encourage social and economic participation of migrant women by empowering them with basic computer knowledge and skills and other digital competencies.

Sixteen women are currently engaged in the program. Prior to starting the training, most women had no computer skills and were unaware of how to use smart phone apps such as MyGov and online banking.

At the halfway point, participants have increased their understanding of computers and laptops, have gained confidence in logging on and off, creating and finding a file, opening and closing folders, using an internet browser, naming and renaming files, creating email addresses and sending emails, downloading and navigating apps on their smart phones.

The tutorials were presented face to face, as online tutorials were not an option for the participants. Because of Covid-19, progress has been slower than originally planned due to Department of Health restrictions in Queensland.

Throughout the course, Carers of Africa has constantly assessed the program delivery and responded to feedback. The plan is to continue to develop and deliver training to meet the information needs of new and emerging communities.