The government has set up a £400,000 fund to help housing providers’ tenants improve their online skills and increase digital inclusion. Housing providers are expected to bid for ‘match-funding’, taking the total to £800,000. The deadline for match-funded bids is 3 June 2013.
Lord Freud, Minister for Welfare Reform, said, “We are launching the Digital Deal to support those who want to get online so they can access the opportunities the internet opens up – for example to help search and apply for jobs, find out about community services and to manage their benefits online.”
The Digital Deal is being managed by the Online Centres Foundation, the organisation behind the 5,000 strong UK online centres network.
Helen Milner, chief executive, Online Centres Foundation, said, “With more than a quarter of those living in social housing not using the internet, the Digital Deal is a great opportunity for housing providers to innovate in the way they support tenants to improve their online skills. Universal Credit has huge potential to get people online, not only so they can make claims, but also so they can find work, save money, connect with friends and family and learn more.”