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by Phil Dolby
The COVID-19 Mutual Aid Helpline has proved to be a great success during the coronavirus pandemic. It has highlighted how useful modern technology is and the importance of maintaining communication between people.
All sorts of WhatsApp groups have sprung up, together with Zoom and Skype, emails and texting. If you have no idea what the last sentence is talking about you are not alone.
A splinter group to the COVID Helpline has been set up to help local people use the internet to communicate. Crich Area Digital Friends will concentrate initially on helping people with a smart phone, tablet or computer, to use very simple apps to communicate with friends and family.
I don’t twitter, tweet or blog and I don’t want to, but to be able to see and talk to our grandson while he’s running round excitedly showing me his toys, even though he is a thousand miles away, makes the internet worthwhile. We used to talk about videophones, well now they exist and are free and as easy to use as a telephone.
The group aims to be able to give advice on equipment and costs, be able to lend equipment to people to try and to help people master very simple communication apps.
If you, or someone you know, would like help to stay in touch with friends, or make new friends please call the Crich Mutual Aid Helpline on 01773 447533 or contact us on our Facebook page Crich Area Digital Friends and they will pass on your details to us.
We are appealing for anybody with an old smartphone or tablet lurking in a bottom drawer, to donate them to this project. We will ensure the memories have been wiped clean and refurbish them so they can be used for instructional purposes or lent to people as a trial. Crich Post Office is the collection point.
We are applying for funding from various places and would like to thank Counsellor David Taylor and Counsellor Trevor Ainsworth of Derbyshire County Council for their contributions towards the project.
I am delighted to be able to help fund this important project and I am sure it will be successful in providing the residents of Crich area the support they need in these difficult times.
See this news article about more amazing funding from The National Lottery Community Fund
and the video below for more news about the Digital Friends: