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Plymouth Digital Inclusion Network Wins Award

Plymouth Digital Inclusion Network has been recognised at the annual SOCITM awards.  

SOCITM is the Society for Innovation, Technology and Modernisation and is the membership organisation for developing and delivering public services.

Plymouth Digital Inclusion Network is a citywide network of several council departments and partner organisations across the health, housing and education sectors as well as voluntary, community and social enterprises, to tackle digital exclusion. It has won the award for best outcome for a community group or area. 

The Digital inclusion network helps to train and increase the number of volunteer digital champions alongside offering support and opportunities to increase access to devices, training, and connectivity. Since its launch in July 2020, it has: 

  • Helped the Plymouth Soup Run source mobile phones for rough sleepers to stay in touch with health professionals and the Rough Sleeper Team.
  • Run regular free courses aimed at helping all ages and abilities from schoolchildren to entrepreneurs wishing to improve their digital skills and online presence
  • Handed out preloaded data SIMS to people in digital poverty
  • Collected and donated refurbished devices

Councillor Pat Patel, Cabinet Member for Customer Services, Culture, Leisure and Sport said: “I’m absolutely delighted that we have been recognised by SOCITM for our work in tackling exclusion. We are absolutely committed to increasing resilience in our communities by empowering citizens and making them more aware of existing resources in their community.”

Over the next 12 months the network will continue working with partners across the city to facilitate a joined-up approach to tackling digital exclusion, with an ambition to reduce digital exclusion by 10 per cent (1,200 people). 

Pictured left to right: Craig Wilkins, chair of the Southwest branch of SOCITM, Mel Rawles Development Manager at Plymouth City Council and Lauren Sheppard, National Events Manager for SOCITM.