If you’re reading this, the chances are you’re pretty good with computers, the internet, and probably smartphones and tablets too.
But official figures released last month reveal that a staggering 7.4 million Britons have never used the internet. Many more don’t have basic online skills such as searching the web or sending and receiving emails, and they’re missing out on all that computers and the internet can offer.
Supporting others, particularly older people, to develop digital skills and confidence is essential in this modern age. It can help them save money, reduce feelings of isolation, enable them to find new hobbies and interests, enhance relationships with family living further afield, and connect them with their local community via Streetlife.
Share your skills this April!
Spring Online is an award-winning national campaign run by Digital Unite, that aims to help older people and other less confident users to understand and use digital technology.
The campaign works by supporting people like you to hold free taster events within your local community for neighbours, colleagues, friends or family between the 22 and 26 April 2013.
Taster sessions can be held anywhere from your front room to the local library, internet café or pub. How they’re run is up to each organiser, and they need not cost anything but a bit of your time.
Last year around 2,000 Spring Online events were held, helping over 30,000 people explore digital technology, many for the first time. Here’s what one delighted participant had to say:
You know, I was so terrified this morning I nearly never came. I have never used a computer before and now I have an email account and can shop online. I am so delighted I came, I wish I could stay all day.
And running an event is extremely rewarding for the organisers too:
It has been wonderful to see people going from being afraid to even touch a computer and not knowing what a mouse is, let alone how to use it, to setting up email accounts and searching websites. The change in their confidence was so rewarding to see.
Register your Spring Online event here. You’ll receive a marketing pack, tips, activity ideas and how-to guides, plus a chance to win cash prizes.
Then post details of your event on Streetlife, to recruit helpers and encourage local people to spread the word to their neighbours!
streetlife.com, the local social network, is a fully funded startup based in Covent Garden, London.
We’re a small, passionate team. Our meetings are informal, our fridge is stocked with diet coke and beer, and we’re out to change the world, one neighbourhood at a time.
We’re looking for a friendly, enthusiastic intern to champion our online community over the next three months. You’ll help to manage, engage with and grow our user base, and there’s a good chance of progression to a permanent position within our marketing team.
The role involves:
responding to user support queries and suggestions
building the user support knowledge base
monitoring and moderating community content
tracking and sharing newsworthy community content
researching, building and maintaining contact lists and databases
contributing to our corporate social media channels
providing general administrative support
The ideal candidate will have:
strong written and verbal communication skills
a friendly and persuasive (yet tactful!) manner
excellent attention to detail
patience and a willingness to persist at repetitive tasks
solid organisational skills and the ability to work autonomously
a good understanding of social media and digital communications
an interest in marketing, customer relations or community management
enthusiasm for helping people connect with their local community
We’re after a graduate who is available immediately, and until the end of April 2013 or beyond. Applicants must be able and eligible to work at our Central London office.
Benefits include a salary of £12.5k pro-rata, lunch and drinks while you’re at our office, and a great location in the heart of Covent Garden.
This is a great opportunity for a digital native to gain experience with an online community which we expect to grow to millions of active users, and hopefully to have some fun too.
Please send your CV (including details of any previous work experience) and details of your availability to email@example.com. No agencies.
What better way to start 2013, than by getting together with your neighbours and supporting one another?
We’ve put together a few ideas for how the Streetlife community can help you achieve your new year’s resolutions:
Live more healthily
If you’re aiming to lose weight, get fit or quit smoking, you’re more likely to stick at it if there’s someone else counting on you. Streetlife provides the perfect place to find a local walking buddy or sports team, so you can encourage one another and make exercise a fun and sociable experience.
Sharing skills and belongings with neighbours can save you money, give you access to more, and help you meet some friendly local faces. Streetlife makes it easy to borrow and lend everything from hedge trimmers, tents and sewing machines, to spreadsheet skills and baking tips.
Try new experiences
Whether you want to learn a language, take up painting, volunteer for a local cause, or just explore your area, the Streetlife community can offer a wealth of advice on local events and opportunities, and help you find people with common interests to start up a new group or club.
Improve your home
There’s no better way to find a reliable tradesman than by word of mouth, and the local social network is a great place to ask for recommendations. If you need to borrow tools or could do with some tips for a DIY job around the home or garden, someone on Streetlife can probably help too.
Join the conversation in your neighbourhood on Streetlife and make 2013 a neighbourly new year!
From Jubilee street parties to Olympic volunteers, 2012 was a fantastic year for bringing communities together.
And we were thrilled to welcome an incredible 50,000 newcomers to Streetlife in neighbourhoods across the nation, helped by a BBC Breakfast News feature, Stephen Fry’s extraordinary Twitter clout, and our partnership with regional media publisher Archant.
But the greatest achievements and most heart-warming stories came from members of our community, connecting and sharing with their neighbours.
We saw lost pets reunited with owners, scammers exposed, threatened public services saved, local conversations make national headlines, countless skills and belongings offered, and real-life friendships formed.
Emma O., a keen Streetlife contributor, sums it up brilliantly:
Seeing people on Streetlife sharing and helping their neighbours is a lovely reminder that I’m part of a supportive, friendly community.
Borrowing a ladder from a neighbour used to be commonplace, but for many, lifestyles and the way we socialise changed. Busy schedules and less contact with neighbours made it more awkward to ask favours, and a shift towards consumerism encouraged a culture of buying things, even though we might only use them once or twice.
With the economic climate as it is, people are starting to think differently about purchases, and they’re also considering how their consumption affects the environment. The focus is shifting from ownership to access, and the internet is making it easier to discover and pool assets, from DVD collections to cars and spare rooms.
Give, swap, lend and share on Streetlife
Within every local community there’s a wealth of knowledge, skills and belongings. From hedge trimmers, fishing rods and slow cookers, to sewing, gardening or spreadsheet skills, everyone has something to offer.
Sharing enables us to experience and access much more. It can help save money, space and resources, and best of all, it’s a great way to get to know your neighbours and help them out.
To celebrate Global Sharing Day, we’ve made it easier to pool neighbourhood resources on Streetlife.
What will you share?
The possibilities are endless, but here are some suggestions for things you might share with your neighbours:
lend and borrow things you use rarely, like drills, jump leads, folding chairs and gazebos
offer your time and skills – you might be able to help a neighbour learn a foreign language, while someone down the road could fix your leaky tap
exchange items like plant cuttings, home-grown produce and clothes, so you get more variety without breaking the bank
have an autumn clear-out and give away second hand furniture, books and unused electronic goods to support local community groups and newcomers setting up home
share your passion or hobby – if you have camping equipment or a yoga mat, offering it to neighbours could help them try something new without having to spend money upfront
pool recommendations and business contacts; there’s no better way to find a trusty tradesman or a friendly freelancer than by word of mouth
share land – if you have a garden or allotment but limited time or skills to cultivate it, invite a green-fingered neighbour to help out
exchange local knowledge, news and events, so together you can make the most of where you live.
Offer the skills or belongings you’d be happy to share with your neighbours here, or start a conversation requesting something you need help with.
We’re excited to introduce a brand new feature this week, to help local groups, businesses, services and causes engage with their community.
Since we launched, over 60,000 people have joined the local social network, and posted almost 200,000 messages exchanging recommendations and discussing nearby news, services and events.
Now, by popular demand, we’re inviting users to create pages for organisations they care about, to help their neighbours discover and support local groups, businesses and good causes.
Extend your reach
Within your local community there are potential members, volunteers, employees, supporters, customers or donors for your organisation. Our new pages enable you to reach them, in the voice of your local organisation.
Whether you run a rugby club, church group or hair salon, you’ll have advice, opportunities and support to offer your local community. Creating a page on Streetlife will help you engage with new people in your area, build a loyal following, and share your news and events with them.
Create a page for an organisation you represent, or suggest local groups or businesses you’d like to engage with on Streetlife here.
We’ve been busy spreading the word about Get Online Week - a brilliant national campaign encouraging people to get more out of the internet.
According to figures from UK Online Centres, an estimated 14.5 million people don’t have the skills to make the most of all that computers and the internet can offer.
The internet can help you shop and bank from the comfort of your home, keep in touch with friends and relatives across the globe, research your family history, save money, learn new skills, find work, and even connect with your local community.
Around 3,000 events are taking place throughout the UK this week, offering people who haven’t used a computer or the internet before, and those who know a little but want to learn more, the opportunity to build their skills and confidence.
streetlife.com is a social networking startup based in Covent Garden, London. We recently joined forces with Archant, and we’re rapidly extending our reach via their extensive regional media portfolio.
We’re looking for a graphic / UX designer to revolutionise our print and online promotional assets and to make our site even more awesome as we add new features and (lots!) more users.
We’re a small, passionate team. Our meetings are informal, our fridge is always stocked with diet coke and beer, and we’re out to change the world.
We want someone who
will take our vision of local social networking and make it beautiful
will champion simplicity, usability and user experience in everything they do
is focused on delivery – of messages, features, quality, and of a great user experience
is as comfortable producing pixel-perfect layouts and icons as they are sketching out imaginative ideas and user-friendly flows on a whiteboard
can strike the right balance between evolution and revolution (some parts of our site need some love, but we’re not looking to throw everything away and start again)
is an excellent communicator
has a great portfolio available online and can demonstrate innovative designs for print, email, web and mobile; if you’re also a keen illustrator we’ll be overjoyed
shares our enthusiasm for helping people get more out of their local community.
Talent and enthusiasm count more than commercial experience for this role. We’d welcome applications from recent graduates who want to hit the ground running and are happy to learn as they go.
This is a permanent, full-time position; applicants must be eligible and able to work out of our Central London office. Salary will be based on experience with performance-based bonuses and equity (shares) available for anyone who works with us long-term. Meals and snacks (from the best eateries in Covent Garden) are included.
Get in touch with us. Be a part of something big.
Please send CV / covering letter (including details of previous work) to firstname.lastname@example.org. No Agencies.
We’ve been bursting to tell everyone about a fantastic new partnership we’ve formed with Archant - the UK’s largest independently-owned regional community media business.
The collaboration will enable us to rapidly extend our reach to local communities across the UK, building on Archant’s portfolio of 60 newspapers, 80 magazine and 200 digital products, that reach almost 5 million people.
This week we’re launching across their London weekly titles with a special feature inviting people in North West, North and East London, South Essex and North Kent to join the local social network and connect with their neighbours. And that’s only the start!
We know that streetlife.com can strengthen community spirit. In South West London, where we first launched, thousands of people have come to depend upon the site as a trusty source of local knowledge and support, visiting daily to share practical information, advice and opinions about the place they live.
In a recent survey, 68% of our users said they feel more connected to their local community since joining streetlife.com; 62% have chatted with neighbours they wouldn’t otherwise have been in touch with, and 75% say they’re better informed about local services, news, businesses, events and crime.
Now we’ll be bringing the same benefits to hundreds more local communities, as they join the conversation with their neighbours on streetlife.