Reminder: Digital Exclusion Survey – Blue Badges & Other Council Services

A reminder that the Digital Exclusion survey from Age UK’s Campaigns Team is open until Friday 23rd September. Find out full details, including how to complete the survey.

This is a quick reminder that Age UK’s Campaigns Team are running a short survey to learn how digital-only and digital-first methods for accessing local council services are disproportionately impacting older people and how local Age UKs are supporting them. Find out full details, including how to access the survey, below. The survey is open until Friday 23rd September.

Age UK’s Campaigns Team have been hearing that digital-only and digital-first methods for accessing local council services are disproportionately impacting older people. This is making it harder for older people who do not have access to the internet or are not confident online, to apply for Blue Badges and access other important services provided by their local council.

We’re keen to learn more about how widespread this issue is becoming, how local Age UKs are supporting older people experiencing digital exclusion, and how Age UK can respond nationally.

If you have time, we’d love to hear from your organisation via our short survey. The survey is open until Friday 23rd September.

If you have any questions, please contact Eorann Lean.

The Digital Champion Programme has Launched!

Our largest ever Digital Champion Programme has launched! Find out all the details of the programme, including how your organisation can get involved.

We’re delighted to announce that our largest ever Digital Champion Programme has launched! This programme will see 50 local Age UKs and Age Cymrus deliver vital digital inclusion services between June 2022 and November 2025. Find out full details below, including details of the Age UK Digital Inclusion Network, which all Age UKs are welcome to join.

We’d like to congratulate the 25 local Age UKs who will form Cohort 1 of the Digital Champion Programme which started on 1 June and will deliver for 18 months.

If your Age UK would like to get involved in Cohort 2, then do keep your eyes peeled towards the start of 2024 for the next round of applications, when we’ll have a further 25 grants available.

The importance of Digital Inclusion

As you know, essential services, such as banking, tax, shopping and health services are increasingly becoming ‘digital first’. The Covid-19 pandemic has compounded our reliance on digital as it has changed the way we work, socialise and participate in further learning, exercise or hobbies. Older people who do not have access to the internet are now at increased risk of missing out.

How digital exclusion disproportionately impacts older people:

  • Age is the biggest indicator of being digitally excluded, with the risk of being digitally excluded increasing with age.
  • Almost 5 million people over the age of 55 are not online.
  • 79% of older people who would like to use the internet more say a lack of skills is the thing holding them back.

What is the Digital Champion Programme?

The Digital Champion Programme will primarily address digital skills support, and provision of relevant technology and connectivity.

The Programme aims to tackle digital exclusion by:

  • Embedding volunteer Digital Champions into local Age UKs frontline services
  • Providing ongoing support for older people, and high-risk older people[1], to increase and improve their digital skills
  • Provision of loan technology to those older people without access.

This model of delivery has been tried and tested by Age UK through previous programmes: One Digital and Think Digital.

What are the benefits for older people and volunteers?

We know from previous delivery that the model achieves positive outcomes across the board for older people, volunteers, and local Age UKs. Based on evaluations of the service model over the past five years, we expect to see the following programme outcomes:

  1. Older people will feel more inspired and more motivated to get online.
  2. Older people will develop digital skills and confidence and gain longer-term access to technology equipment.
  3. Older people will feel less isolated and more socially connected.
  4. Volunteer Digital Champions will benefit from increased confidence and skills.
  5. Local Age UK brand partners will be better equipped to provide a wide range of high-quality digital support to a greater number of older people, future proofing delivery potential.

Hear about Ray and Lloyds experiences as part of the Digital Champion Programme here: www.ageuk.org.uk/digital-champions

Join the Age UK Digital Inclusion Network

Whether you’re delivering this programme or not, you are welcome to join the Age UK Digital Inclusion Network where you’ll have access to the Knowledge Hub, Question & Answers, and Network meetings, which include guest speakers and structured discussion around key digital inclusion topics. This Network is for anyone who is already delivering or interested in delivering digital inclusion activities with older people. We encourage members to co-facilitate Network meetings, feed into the Knowledge Hub, and help answer members’ burning questions!

You can join the Age UK Digital Inclusion Network by emailing us at servicesdigital@ageuk.org.uk.

Want to know more?

Join the Age UK Digital Inclusion Network and find out more about Age UK’s digital inclusion services by emailing us at servicesdigital@ageuk.org.uk

Project webpage: www.ageuk.org.uk/digital-champions


Footnotes

[1] We know that some older people are more at risk than others when it comes to digital exclusion, and therefore want to focus some delivery within this programme on supporting those older people at high risk of being digitally excluded. Key risk indicators include, but are not limited to, older people: On lower incomes; Who are of an older age (75+); Who are living alone; With mobility challenges; With problems with memory or ability to concentrate; Who are from an ethnic minority group; Who are LGBTQ+.


Digital Exclusion Survey – Blue Badges & Other Council Services

Age UK’s Campaigns Team are keen to hear from local Age UKs about the ways that digital methods for accessing local council services are impacting older people.

Age UK’s Campaigns Team are running a short survey to learn how digital-only and digital-first methods for accessing local council services are disproportionately impacting older people and how local Age UKs are supporting them. Find out full details, including how to access the survey, below.

Age UK’s Campaigns Team have been hearing that digital-only and digital-first methods for accessing local council services are disproportionately impacting older people. This is making it harder for older people who do not have access to the internet or are not confident online, to apply for Blue Badges and access other important services provided by their local council.

We’re keen to learn more about how widespread this issue is becoming, how local Age UKs are supporting older people experiencing digital exclusion, and how Age UK can respond nationally.

If you have time, we’d love to hear from your organisation via our short survey.

If you have any questions, please contact Luke Pilot.

Free webinar | Learn about Digi-Board – A new board evaluation tool

Digi-board are running a free webinar where you can learn more about Digi-Board and hear how the board and senior management team at Age UK Lancashire have used the platform.

Digi-Board provides tools to help charities to overcome the complexities of governance. They’re running a free webinar where you can learn more about Digi-Board and hear how the board and senior management team at Age UK Lancashire have used the platform. The webinar will take place on Tuesday 28 June from 11.00am to 12.00pm – read on for full details, or click here to book your place.

When resources, time and money are scarce, governance is often put on the back burner to be dealt with later. Yet, many charities have found that, if anything, the pandemic reinforced the idea that improving governance helps us all manage what we have more efficiently.

So what does it take to get to good governance in a time and cost effective way? And how do you evaluate the hard and soft drivers?

Digi-Board provides tools to help you address these challenges and overcome the complexities of governance – enabling you to assess your governance practices against the principles of the Charity Governance Code and other critical factors for good governance.

This free webinar will provide an opportunity for you to learn more about Digi-Board and hear how the board and senior management team at Age UK Lancashire and other charities took the bold step to use Digi-Board’s innovative digital approach to assess their governance effectiveness and learn how they identified what and where to improve.

Learn more about how they used data driven information, actionable insights and benchmarking to do things better to improve the overall effectiveness, performance and governance of the charity.

Speakers:

  • Helen Michaels CEO and Co-Founder – Digi-Board
  • Teri Stephenson CEO – Age UK Lancashire
  • David Burland Founder – dbassociates and Digi-Board associate consultant

Book your place

The webinar will take place on Tuesday 28 June from 11.00am to 12.00pm.

To register for a place, please click here.

Chance to win £5,000 by entering the Craig Macdonald Memorial Prize

If your organisation is working in your local communities to help close the digital divide, you have the chance to win £5,000 by entering the Craig Macdonald Memorial Prize in the Digital Leaders 100 Awards 2022

Is your organisation working in your local communities to help close the digital divide? If so, you have the chance to win £5,000 by entering the Craig Macdonald Memorial Prize in the Digital Leaders 100 Awards 2022. Find out full details below.

Craig Macdonald was a technology professional dedicated to public service who passed away suddenly in early 2020. In honour of Craig’s memory, Tech Investor Rob Wilmot is partnering with Digital Leaders for the second time to award a prize of £5,000 for the best grassroots organisation working in their local community to help close the digital divide.

Last year’s winners were Knowledge Pool, a free training platform in Doncaster offering intensive training in Microsoft tools. Information about Knowledge Pool and how the Craig Macdonald Memorial Prize has impacted them can be found here.

Enter for the Craig Macdonald Memorial Prize using this link, or enter for one of the 11 other Digital Leaders categories.

Funding Bulletin Updated

We were made aware of the above opportunity after we published our latest Funding Bulletin on Tuesday. We have updated the bulletin to reflect this and you can download the updated document below:

Digital Champion Programme – One week left to submit funding applications

A quick reminder that funding applications for our Digital Champion Programme are open until midday on May 4th 2022. Find out all the details on how to apply.

This is a quick reminder that applications for the Digital Champion funding opportunity are live until 12pm on 4th May 2022. Click here to find out more, including how to apply. Please note: The end date for Cohort 1 of this programme is 30th November 2023, not December 2023 as originally stated in some of the supporting documents provided on the loop. These documents have now been updated to reflect this.

About the Programme

The Digital Champion programme will support local brand partners to deliver digital inclusion services with older people in areas of high digital exclusion across England and Wales, and to transform the delivery of digital skills support to ensure that we can reach and support those people that need it most. The programme will involve local brand partners recruiting and training volunteer Digital Champions; delivering awareness raising activities to motivate and inspire older people to get involved; provide technology on a loan basis to older people without access; and deliver skills support sessions to improve the confidence and skills of older people so that they can benefit from being online.

Supporting older people most at risk of digital exclusion

As part of this programme, we will also support local brand partners who want to focus their delivery on supporting a high-risk group to get online. Whilst the core elements of the programme will largely remain the same, adaptations will likely need to be made to the programme model, and expectations will be amended to reflect the higher intensity support that will be required. By focussing some of the delivery of this programme on supporting high-risk groups, we will reach those older people most in need, and gain a better understanding about how the service works, and to guide service development to ensure it remains as impactful and accessible as possible.

Next Steps

The Digital Champion Programme will be delivered across two cohorts of 25 partners, with cohort 1 (this opportunity) commencing in June 2022, and cohort 2 in March 2024. Each partner will receive up to £72,000 over 18 months to deliver the programme in their local area, including set-up time.

Please note: the funding and delivery period remains the same for partners who apply to deliver the programme with older people generally, and for those who apply to focus their delivery on a high-risk group. Expected reach will differ accordingly.

For more information on this opportunity and to apply, please click below:

This funding opportunity closes 12pm 4th May 2022.

If you have any questions about this new opportunity, please get in touch with servicesdigital@ageuk.org.uk. If you are having trouble accessing the link above, please contact theloop@ageuk.org.uk.

Reminder: Digital Champion Programme – Funding Applications now open!

A quick reminder that funding applications for our Digital Champion Programme are open until midday on May 4th 2022. Find out all the details on how to apply.

This is a quick reminder that applications for the Digital Champion funding opportunity are live until 12pm on 4th May 2022. The programme will support local brand partners to deliver digital inclusion services in areas of high digital exclusion across England and Wales, and to transform the delivery of digital skills support so that we can reach and support those people that need it most. Read on to find out more, including how to apply.

Although the number of older people who are digitally connected continues to rise, there are still around 5 million people over the age of 55 who are not online. We live in an increasingly online world, with many key services moving to become ‘digital first’, and while many older people have embraced digital technology, there are others who are less confident who are at risk of being left behind.

About the Programme

The Digital Champion programme will support local brand partners to deliver digital inclusion services with older people in areas of high digital exclusion across England and Wales, and to transform the delivery of digital skills support to ensure that we can reach and support those people that need it most. The programme will involve local brand partners recruiting and training volunteer Digital Champions; delivering awareness raising activities to motivate and inspire older people to get involved; provide technology on a loan basis to older people without access; and deliver skills support sessions to improve the confidence and skills of older people so that they can benefit from being online.

Supporting older people most at risk of digital exclusion

As part of this programme, we will also support local brand partners who want to focus their delivery on supporting a high-risk group to get online. Whilst the core elements of the programme will largely remain the same, adaptations will likely need to be made to the programme model, and expectations will be amended to reflect the higher intensity support that will be required. By focussing some of the delivery of this programme on supporting high-risk groups, we will reach those older people most in need, and gain a better understanding about how the service works, and to guide service development to ensure it remains as impactful and accessible as possible.

Next Steps

The Digital Champion Programme will be delivered across two cohorts of 25 partners, with cohort 1 (this opportunity) commencing in June 2022, and cohort 2 in March 2024. Each partner will receive up to £72,000 over 18 months to deliver the programme in their local area, including set-up time.

Please note: the funding and delivery period remains the same for partners who apply to deliver the programme with older people generally, and for those who apply to focus their delivery on a high-risk group. Expected reach will differ accordingly.

For more information on this opportunity and to apply, please click below:

This funding opportunity closes 12pm 4th May 2022.

If you have any questions about this new opportunity, please get in touch with servicesdigital@ageuk.org.uk. If you are having trouble accessing the link above, please contact theloop@ageuk.org.uk.

Local Partner Websites: Important change to storage of form submissions from April 4th onwards

An important change to the ways local Age UK websites store data submitted via forms is coming on April 4th. Find out the steps you need to take as a result of this change.

Age UK’s Network Digital Team is changing the way data is stored by Partner websites. Many of you use forms on your websites to collect enquires, contact information, or other data. Currently, this data is held indefinitely unless you choose to delete it, however our websites are not designed for storing data long-term under GDPR rules. So, from April 4th onwards, only the last 90 days’ worth of form submissions to your websites will be stored and any data submissions older than 90 days will be automatically deleted. Find out full details below, including how to download the data stored in your websites. The Network Digital Team have informed their local Age UK contacts about this change already, but we would be grateful if you could pass this message onto the member of staff that runs your website to make doubly sure that the necessary people are aware of the upcoming change.

What is happening?

Age UK’s Network Digital Team are making a change to the way that Partner Website forms store data. Many of you use forms to collect enquires, contact information or other data gathering purposes. Visitors to local partners websites submit enquiries and an email alert is sent from the website to a specified email address at your organisation, which informs your staff that the submitted data is available to be downloaded.

An example of a form on a Partner website.

You can read more about this process on the Digital Hub.

Currently there is no limit on how long these submissions stay within Partner websites – they are held until you choose delete them. However the EPiServer CMS (the system that runs our websites) is not designed for storing data long term in regards to GDPR.

How will I be impacted?

To align with GDPR, from April 4th onwards we are changing to a fixed term of 90 days for storing these submissions.

This means that from Monday 4th April when this change is initiated:

  • Any data submissions older than 90 days will be automatically deleted.
  • Once the system is active, going forward only the last 90 days’ worth of enquires will be listed in the system.
  • There is no way to recover deleted data that has passed the 90 days limit.

You will still be able to access these form submissions in the same way, but the data will only be stored for 90 days.

Digital Hub guidance on creating forms on your websites can be found here.

When is it happening?

This change will take place on Monday 4th April 2022.

What does my organisation need to do?

You will need to ensure that you have downloaded all the data from all the forms you have on your website. Most of you will already be doing this regularly. However, if you have been using your website as a way to archive all enquires submitted via a form, please be aware anything older than 90 days will be deleted on Monday 4th April.

You can find out how to do download the data collected on your website on page 17 of this document. This process should only take a few minutes.

The Network Digital Team have informed their local Age UK contacts about this change already, but we would be grateful if you could pass this message on to the member of staff that runs your website to make doubly sure that the necessary people are aware of the upcoming change and can download any data older than 90 days.

Any Questions?

If you have any questions about this change, or how to download the data contained in your website, please email partner.content@ageuk.org.uk.

Cyber Security Guidance from the National Cyber Security Centre

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is encouraging organisations to bolster their digital resilience and they have produced two instructional guides which may be helpful.

The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) is encouraging businesses and organisations to bolster their online and digital resilience should the threat of cyber attacks increase following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. They have produced two instructional guides which may be helpful, the first covers actions to take when the cyber threat is heightened and the second is a cyber security guide for small businesses.

While the NCSC is not aware of any current specific threats to UK organisations in relation to events in and around Ukraine, there has been a historical pattern of cyber attacks against Ukraine with international consequences. The NCSC is therefore encouraging UK organisations to follow the actionable steps in the NCSC guidance that reduce the risk of falling victim to an attack.

New Digital Inclusion Funding Opportunity – Applications now open!

Funding applications for our new Digital Champion Programme are now open until midday on May 4th 2022. Find out all the details on how to apply.

We recently messaged to announce a new funding opportunity to take part in our upcoming Digital Champion programme. We’re pleased to announce that this funding opportunity is now live until 12pm on 4th May 2022. The Digital Champion programme will support local brand partners to deliver digital inclusion services in areas of high digital exclusion across England and Wales, and to transform the delivery of digital skills support so that we can reach and support those people that need it most. Read on to find out more, including how to apply.

Although the number of older people who are digitally connected continues to rise, there are still around 5 million people over the age of 55 who are not online. We live in an increasingly online world, with many key services moving to become ‘digital first’, and while many older people have embraced digital technology, there are others who are less confident who are at risk of being left behind.

About the Programme

The Digital Champion programme will support local brand partners to deliver digital inclusion services with older people in areas of high digital exclusion across England and Wales, and to transform the delivery of digital skills support to ensure that we can reach and support those people that need it most. The programme will involve local brand partners recruiting and training volunteer Digital Champions; delivering awareness raising activities to motivate and inspire older people to get involved; provide technology on a loan basis to older people without access; and deliver skills support sessions to improve the confidence and skills of older people so that they can benefit from being online.

Supporting older people most at risk of digital exclusion

As part of this programme, we will also support local brand partners who want to focus their delivery on supporting a high-risk group to get online. Whilst the core elements of the programme will largely remain the same, adaptations will likely need to be made to the programme model, and expectations will be amended to reflect the higher intensity support that will be required. By focussing some of the delivery of this programme on supporting high-risk groups, we will reach those older people most in need, and gain a better understanding about how the service works, and to guide service development to ensure it remains as impactful and accessible as possible.

Next Steps

The Digital Champion Programme will be delivered across two cohorts of 25 partners, with cohort 1 (this opportunity) commencing in June 2022, and cohort 2 in March 2024. Each partner will receive up to £72,000 over 18 months to deliver the programme in their local area, including set-up time.

Please note: the funding and delivery period remains the same for partners who apply to deliver the programme with older people generally, and for those who apply to focus their delivery on a high-risk group. Expected reach will differ accordingly.

For more information on this opportunity and to apply, please click below:

This funding opportunity closes 12pm 4th May 2022.

If you have any questions about this new opportunity, please get in touch with servicesdigital@ageuk.org.uk. If you are having trouble accessing the link above, please contact theloop@ageuk.org.uk.