City-focused full fibre broadband ISP Hyperoptic has today launched its first Digital Skills Academy for local people in Southwark (London), which they say will enable 50 “volunteer champions” to be given free training and support so that they can then help to develop the digital skills of other residents in the borough.
Southwark is an important area for the ISP as they’ve already reached an agreement with the local authority to enable 100,000 premises to access their 1Gbps capable full fibre (FTTP / FTTB) broadband network in the borough (at no cost to the taxpayer), albeit mostly large apartment buildings – 53,000 council homes and 46,000 other homes – plus around 1,000 commercial properties (here).
Hyperoptic’s network also serves around 6 libraries in Southwark, where some of the aforementioned training will take place (Canada Water, Peckham, Dulwich, Camberwell, Grove Vale, Kingswood, New Walworth). The volunteers themselves will come from a mix of library staff, residents looking to upskill or students who are looking to improve their CV.
The volunteers will attend an introductory session delivered by training specialists We are Digital and they will also have access to 15 hours of online accredited training courses. The training covers digital essentials, banking, recruitment, government services and teaching skills.
Dana Tobak, CEO of Hyperoptic, said:
“We believe everyone should be able to access and benefit from reliable digital connectivity and we are thrilled that our skills academy will help connect even more people in Southwark to the possibilities available to them online.
Just 7% of UK premises have access to the gold standard of fibre, but thanks to the foresight of Southwark Council, the area now has access to the fastest broadband available in the UK, enabling homes and business to make the most of today’s connected devices and streaming services, as well as future proofing the area’s infrastructure for tomorrow’s technology.”
Councillor Stephanie Cryan, Cabinet Member for Jobs, said:
“We are delighted Hyperoptic is launching this initiative. The role of the champions is set to be incredibly valuable for the community as well as immensely rewarding for those involved. We want to make sure that all residents benefit from opportunities to take advantage of the digital revolution and this initiative helps to provide that opportunity.”
After all that the volunteers will be tasked with sharing their knowledge through workshops set-up in the local community. Anyone interested in applying to become a Hyperoptic Digital Skills Champion should email: email@example.com.