Salford Council works with TalkTalk to tackle digital inclusion

A new pilot scheme is set to be launched next week to help tackle digital poverty in Salford, providing free support for residents during Get Online Week.

TalkTalk has recruited around 30 employees to run workshops in the Council’s gateway centres and community centres, supporting residents by delivering easy to understand information and answering questions.

The newly recruited digital champions will help breakdown fears about scams online and provide practical advice and tips to keep people safe.

This free support will continue after Get Online Week, with a system in place for community centres, libraries and other local organisations able to apply to have a digital champion visit their venue.

person using MacBook Pro

Cllr Sharmina August, lead member for inclusive economy, anti-poverty and equalities, said: ‘Digital skills are as essential as being able to read and write so people without are being left behind by an increasingly digital society. We’re committed to supporting residents all year round but Get Online Week is the ideal time for us to provide extra help.

‘So it’s fantastic that TalkTalk are getting on board in this way, showing their long-term commitment to helping residents. We’re looking forward to welcoming TalkTalk employees into our gateways and community centres across the city from Critchley Community Hub to Salford Loaves and Fishes. They’ll help us to provide even more support for anyone who wants to start doing a bit more online. Even if you send the odd email, use Facebook or read the news on your phone, you could still be missing out on so much. And getting the most out of the internet doesn’t have to be scary, we’re encouraging everyone to come along and give it a try, especially during Get Online Week.

‘We’ve worked with lots of partners to organise a whole range of free events across the city for the week commencing Monday 18 October. This includes HOST, our innovation hub at MediaCityUK, whose experts can help you build your portfolio online and be cybersafe. But you can just drop into our Gateways where staff will be in the foyer to help and offering a free brew too! Whether it’s how to navigate the council’s website, complete an online form or sign up for the family portal, help is at hand.

‘Even the week beforehand, on Thursday 14 October from 10am to 3pm, the Co-op’s pop-up van will be at Pendleton Gateway. We want everyone to enjoy the benefits of digital from saving money by finding better deals online to managing your health and keeping in touch with friends and family.’

In related news, a new digital inclusion team at Birmingham City Council aims to ensure the city’s most vulnerable and excluded citizens can have better access to online services.

Photo by Glenn Carstens-Peters


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