When Thomas, 59, found himself in poor health and financially unstable, the last thing he needed was his computer to break. Although Thomas had limited IT skills, he used his laptop to play old movies, read the news online and develop his digital knowledge.
Once his laptop completely broke, Thomas could no longer access the internet or improve his digital skills, limiting his ability to access services and develop digitally. Thomas had attended a variety of IT courses over the years through the Job Centre and other providers, but with overcrowded classes and strict ‘dictation learning’, Thomas felt he would always fall behind and become disheartened. That’s where Wise Steps specialist partner Leonard Cheshire stepped in.
Thomas said: “The difference between other IT sessions and ones provided by Leonard Cheshire Disability are immense, a million miles better.
“I get one to one support and don’t have to wait ages for support. My Wise Steps coach takes time to find out my abilities and what I want to learn. It’s all about me not about numbers. I can ask the coach to repeat sessions or skills again and again, I wouldn’t dare dream of that in a big class.”
Since attending sessions, Thomas has mastered emailing, word documents, formatting and safety online. To help make the session fun, Leonard Cheshire develop enjoyable and humorous tasks. Thomas added: “I love writing the letters, my coach knew I would enjoy that, then using the toolbar until I got it. I think I could write a letter now and have it all spaced out nicely!”
Louise Barbe, Wise Steps Project Coordinator with Leonard Cheshire, said: “Thomas is an absolute joy to teach. He is always there on time and keen to learn, so I couldn’t ask for a better student.
“Leonard Cheshire Disability provides flexible IT support and offers assessments and adaptions to ensure people are using the correct equipment.
“We are delighted to announce that Thomas will be receiving a full computer rig in his home to help maintain his development after he completes his course.”