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  • Swarcliffe residents boosted by IT course

    Older people on a Leeds estate managed by Yorkshire Housing received free tablets on Monday after finishing an IT course.

    Residents in the Swarcliffe estate were presented with Amazon Fire tablets for successfully completing the training earlier in July.

    They live in Yorkshire Housing’s Sherburn Court sheltered housing scheme – which is due for an IT upgrade.

    Wifi could be fitted in the downstairs communal areas by October while the housing association is also donating a desktop computer for residents to use.

    The free IT course was organised to help the tenants, who are all over 55, get the most out of the equipment.

    And the Amazon Fire tablets come with useful apps and links to relevant websites, such as Yorkshire Housing, pre-installed.

    Staff will also be on hand to assist with any future queries the residents may have about using their tablets.

    Yorkshire Housing’s Swarcliffe PFI and Community Investment teams joined forces to offer the training with partner organisation We Are Digital.

    Conor Robinson, Yorkshire Housing’s contract and performance team leader at Swarcliffe, said the residents all passed.

    He added: “Collectively, the tenants have advised that they’re keen to learn more and would also be interested in completing further training.

    “They were all extremely appreciative of the opportunity. They were a great group to work with and it’s been a pleasure to see them all enjoy the course so much.”

    The course, which was held on July 15, covered among the following topics:

    • IT basics (mouse, keyboard, desktop, files and folders);
    • internet browsing and using a search engine to find information;
    • sending and receiving emails and adding attachments;




    • filling in online forms, such as Universal Credit;
    • word processing and writing a CV;
    • online banking;
    • and social media (including Facebook and Twitter).


    The course was offered on an initial trial basis with eight places available to gauge interest.

    Twelve residents responded within days of the scheme first being advertised, which meant some unfortunately missed out.

    But staff now know the demand is there to offer additional runs of the same three-module course.

    The IT upgrade will allow movies to be streamed from the internet for film nights in a boost to Sherburn Court’s social calendar.

    And it will enable residents to access vital services, many of which have moved online.

    Conor said: “A lot of banking is going online and you see local branches closing down on a regular basis.

    “You can also find better deals online, job prospects and even just simply access information.

    “There’s a lot of keen gardeners at Sherburn Court and I’m sure they’ll enjoy educating themselves about certain things.”

    Sherburn Court boasts 86 properties for over-55s. All of the scheme’s tenants are eligible for the IT course.

    Yorkshire Housing manage 1,325 Leeds City Council-owned homes and 240 garages on the Swarcliffe estate in partnership with Yorkshire Transformations Ltd.

    • Pictured with their Amazon Fire tablets on Monday, July 29, are (back row left to right) John Butterfield, John Curry, Yorkshire Housing’s Conor Robinson and Bernard Catley and (front row left to right) Dorothea Butterfield, Anne Cockrem, Phyllis Kilbourne and Helen Hampshire.