The following article is a newspaper feature editorial titled "Change your life for the better by gaining the digital skills you need". It was published by the East Anglian Daily Times on 12th June 2017.
Experts said it decades ago – the internet is the future. But there are still thousands of people who haven’t ventured onto to the World Wide Web.
Of course, some people do not think they need the internet or the use of computers, but if they were really aware of everything that was possible, they might want to explore the idea further.
Lacking confidence or not knowing where to start can be a challenge, as well as the fear of using technology, but with the right guidance and support, everyone can improve the quality of their lives just by letting the world of computers in.
Get the help you need with Lxpert.
Take Beatrice’s* story, for example - an 80-year-old grandmother who loves staying in touch with her children and grandchildren. To help her stay in touch, her family bought her a tablet computer, but she just didn’t know how to use it.
However, Beatrice didn’t give up; instead, she contacted Lxpert, a local computer help company, and arranged a series of one-to-one lessons.
To begin with, Beatrice had very little digital skills, but with the help of her tutor, she was able to quickly learn how to use her tablet.
Commenting on Beatrice’s success, Kennedy Cheng, tutor and founder of Lxpert, the Ipswich-based company, said: “Beatrice was surprised how much her tablet could do. We also explained the importance of internet security and how to stay safe online. Every time she came to see us, I would teach her something new, such as finding information on Google, sending emails and catching up with her favourite TV shows.”
The Lxpert tutor also taught Beatrice how to use the camera on her tablet, which meant she was able to send her grandson a ‘selfie’, much to his surprise!
But Beatrice isn’t the only one who has been benefiting, as many others have upped their IT skills using the services provided by Lxpert.
So whether it’s the desire to stay in touch with family or the need to learn how to upload photos, there is a solution for you as Lxpert does not only offer one-to-one sessions, but also regular free drop-ins, classes and training courses.
Through the sessions, its team offers advice on using the internet, help setting up equipment and much more to help people with the use of the web. And so dedicated to the cause of getting more people online, the team have been working with local charities such as Age UK Suffolk, the Alzheimer’s Society and Suffolk Hearing Advisory Service, among others, to help more people gain digital skills.
Kennedy added: “We provide free one-to-one computer help at the Age UK Suffolk charity shop in Ipswich on Thursday afternoons. Since the launch in July 2015, we have held 83 sessions, tutored over 260 people and helped Age UK raise £469 in donations.”
Currently, Lxpert is about to launch a four-week free internet course for a local parish and its team plans to organise a special internet taster course for residents of an Ipswich nursing home as well.
“I feel it is vitally important to help people (especially the elderly or less mobile) stay independent and keep in touch with friends and family,” said Kennedy.
“However, it’s not only the elderly we help, as we give all people the skills so that they can do things such as plan their travel with online maps, shop online, access public services or make video calls to family abroad, for example.”
What’s more, Lxpert also gives those who have tried a free drop-in or course the opportunity to contact its team for more help at home.
So if you are frustrated with technology or would like to take the first step into the digital world, do feel free to attend one of Lxpert’s free drop-in sessions or contact them by calling 01473 561033. You can also find a wealth of information, including free resources on the website www.lxpert.com.
Free computer help drop-in sessions are available on Thursdays between 2pm and 4pm at the Age UK Suffolk charity shop at 41a Upper Brook Street, Ipswich (opposite Sainsbury’s). To book an appointment, call 01473 257039.
Tutor and founder of Lxpert, Kennedy Cheng helps a customer at Age UK Suffolk.
Photo of the original newspaper article.
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