Go ON Manchester Diary (24th – 25th October)
Thursday 24th October
There was no one attending the session today for the go ON campaign, so I attempted to help people in Job Club. Collette asked me to begin by assisting the girl who applied for the Boots job in week 2. She is attending a course in floristry, and was practicing writing a cover letter to accompany her CV when she applies for jobs. She lacked in confidence, both in her IT skills and her ability to get a job, so it was quite a struggle to get her to work. However, through the hour that I helped her, we got chatting about her interests and her family and she became more confident and we endued up with a brilliant cover letter explaining why she wants to be a florist, and the skills she has, including naming lots of flowers that she works with.
It’s been highlighted to me, just how important confidence is to these people, and these sessions help build all these people’s confidence and they believe they can go on and improve their lives.
Sarah* from last week required my help today too. She had received an email from the Burger King application asking her to fill out a questionnaire. However the email contained no link to the questionnaire, so I helped Julie get onto the website of the agency, and we filled out a ‘comments’ sheet. We ran out of time though, as she had come to me for help at 11.50, so we only had 10 minutes together.
Collette only works at the White Moss Centre on a Thursday, so we said goodbye today. We will hopefully keep in touch, and I’ll be informed of any future events like the go ON campaign
Friday 25th October
Today was my last day at the centre. I was greeted by Michael again, he wanted to look on the internet for Parrots. So once we got logged on, he was happy just looking on Wikipedia for information about a certain species that lives in Kenya.
This kept him occupied for the duration of the session. Jane came along again today. She wanted to continue improving her IT skills. Instead of going on the internet however, we decided to use Microsoft Word, as she had a funny phobia of the keyboard. We began the session by typing out her name, and right clicking her name to make the first letters capitals. She enjoyed the spell checker aspect of the programme, as she struggled with spelling. We purposely spelt words slightly wrong to practice using the spell checker. The mouse confused her, with ‘right click’ and ‘left click’ so, as I was sat to her right, we used “Me” and “you” as our instruction words. We did this about 20 times, and by the end she didn’t need me giving her instructions. She has now enrolled on a proper computer course, which she is really excited about attending.
I’ve had a fantastic time attending the Go ON sessions. As a person who has grown up using computers, it’s clear to me how important computers are in modern society. If I go a day with-out my iPhone or laptop, I feel like I’m cut off from the world.
The people who attend the sessions have seen the benefits of computers, by seeing their children and grandchildren using their smartphones and computers to do online shopping, keep in contact with friends, and also apply for jobs. However, they often find it intimidating, and don’t know where to start. The Go ON campaign is a very personal session, where I believe we were able to help people work at their pace, rather than being on a course which may move too slow or too quickly for their ability.
As a society, without the use of computers, we wouldn’t be half as productive. Hopefully these will session will continue, and more and more people will be able to reap the benefits of computer technology, who otherwise would not.
*all names in the article have been changed
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