Pilbara families invited to enter digital age
Only 47 per cent of financially disadvantaged families have access to a computer at home, compared with 89 per cent in higher income earning groups, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, but The Smith Family aims to bridge this digital divide by making computers more readily available to Pilbara families.
The Smith Family, through partnerships with Royalties for Regions and BHP Billiton Iron Ore, is making 80 refurbished computers available to families in the regions of Karratha, Roebourne/Wickham, South Hedland and Port Hedland as part of its Tech Packs Project.
Through Tech Packs, families are invited to register to receive refurbished computers at no cost and are provided with 12 months free internet connection and training in basic computer skills. Training will commence in April, but The Smith Family is urging members of the public to apply now so as not to miss out on a computer.
Recruitment company WorkPac has generously provided The Smith Family with a large screen television which will be used to assist with training computer recipients to use and maintain their computers.
WorkPac has demonstrated strong community-mindedness in recent months, working with The Smith Family to provide various facilities to local families.
The Tech Pack Project aims to improve community digital literacy, equipping children and their families who may otherwise not be able to afford computers, with the technological skills that are now prerequisites for participation in lifelong learning and social inclusion.
“Families shouldn’t be left behind just because they don’t have access to a computer at home and it’s increasingly important for students to be able to use a computer to complete their homework,” said Learning for Life Worker Daphne Trevurza.
“We want local families to be as technologically advantaged as their city friends, have the facilities to apply for jobs, stay in touch with their families and log their children on to Mathletics to improve not only their digital literacy but their numeracy skills also.”
Research shows that access to ICT (information, communication and technology) can increase study and employment opportunities for parents and young people, improve the capacity of parents to support children at school, increase the engagement of children at school, and improve individual’s self-esteem and overall wellbeing.
To find out more about the Tech Packs Project, or to register for a computer, contact Daphne Trevurza on 9144 1854, Carol Warren on 9144 1854, or Nia Hadenfeldt on 9172 2408.