Residents at an Independent Living Scheme in Aigburth, Liverpool, are set to use their past to improve their computer skills in the present thanks to a National Lottery Grant.
The oral and local history project will see residents at St Peter’s Court develop their IT skills and use them to research local history as well as document their own life stories, creating a lasting legacy for their families.
The scheme has been awarded £10,000 by the National Lottery to improve the IT facilities at the scheme and pay for the classes.
Developed by a group of residents, with the support of scheme manager Sue Spencer, the project takes its inspiration from the work of New York Times bestselling author and education expert, Sir Ken Robinson, whose younger brother John is a resident at St Peter’s Court. Sir Ken has also agreed to be an official supporter of the project.
Regenda Homes, which owns and manages St Peter’s Court, has provided advice on purchasing new equipment, including tablets, a smart TV and laptops, as well as making improvements to the WiFi availability across the scheme.
Over 20 residents are expected to get involved in the project, which will also be opened to the local community.
Dr Paul Otterson and Colin Robinson, lecturers at Liverpool John Moores University, will deliver the programme which will be split across two sessions each week, the first concentrating on IT skills and the other on the history project.
Dr Paul Otterson said: “There is lots of evidence that people learn new skills more efficiently when the task is relevant and meaningful to them. This is particularly so in the case of IT and so this project is a great way to help older residents improve their IT proficiency.
“The training will also be bespoke to those on the course and will range from using Skype to conducting online research and online shopping, meaning residents will learn practical everyday skills alongside those needed to complete their own resource project.”
Sue Spencer, Scheme Manager at St Peter’s Court, said “All the residents are very excited to take part in the project and are eager to improve their skills. Many of the residents are retired and so it is important that lifelong learning projects are made available to them.
“We believe the project will also help people socialise and promote social inclusion for the tenants and the local community.
“We are delighted that the project is being based here at St Peter’s and we look forward to welcoming members of the local community.”
If you would like to get involved in the project please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 0344 7360066.