Computers & Technology

The lockdown emphasised the advantage of being connected on-line. With little physical connection between people, being able to communicate with family and friends was very helpful in coping with the isolation. During the lockdown Step Ahead was able to contribute to member well-being by running Zoom group video activities every day and feedback has been very positive.

Skinny Jump

We have been fortunate to be able to connect to the Skinny Jump programme which provides very cheap internet access for our members. This programme is currently being delivered at Step Ahead in conjunction with the Digital Inclusion Alliance Aotearoa, (DIAA), whose purpose is to make internet access available to people for whom cost would otherwise be a barrier. Step Ahead is working with them to facilitate the provision of 4G modems so that members can access far cheaper data at their homes than is currently available to the public.

There is no contract needed for these modems. The Skinny Jump programme provides a 30 GBytes block of data for only $5, up to a maximum of 150 GBytes – that’s a lot of data!

Connect Project Devices

Step Ahead has been fortunate to secure funding to provide devices such as Chromebooks (small but powerful laptops), Tablets and Smart Phones to members. Members can either purchase the devices at a subsidised rate or loan them. The roll out of these devices has already begun but there are a limited number of them. There are some conditions that need to be met. Please contact us if you are interested.

We are also working with the DIAA through its daughter organisation Stepping Up to provide training on how to use and get the most out of these devices. We are looking to provide training through local Christchurch libraries as part of our activities programmes and in due course making this training available at Step Ahead bases.

About the Computer & Technology Group

These days we seem to be surrounded by technology of all types and getting to grips with things like smart phones, tablets, laptops, cameras and the like, can be a little confusing if not downright daunting. Stanmore, Puriri and Rangiora offer assistance in the form of scheduled Computer and Technology groups. Help is available to assist you in learning how to operate these devices. We also provide education on how to avoid problems online and with troubleshooting technical issues.

Staff may also be available to help iron out any technical difficulties you may be having on a one on one basis. You will normally need to ring and make an appointment but if it is a simple problem, we may be able to help you on the spot.

Typical examples of issues:

  • Sorting out the best cell phone plan;
  • Cell phone operation; e.g  accounts, adding contacts, sending texts;
  • Fixing minor laptop and tablet issues;
  • Basic digital camera operation, printing photos, downloading;
  • How to get the best out of your internet browser.

Computer and Group activities topics include:

  • Setting up an email account;
  • Keeping yourself safe on-line;
  • Online purchases and banking;
  • Social Media; Facebook, Twitter, Instagram.

If you would like to take advantage of these opportunities to learn more about computers and technology we are here to help.

A computer is available at both Stanmore Road and Puriri Street, which can be booked for use by members wanting to browse the internet, check their email, do word processing, or play games.

Step Ahead also has a free laptop lending library where members can borrow a laptop for home use for up to three weeks at a time.