ICT SKILLS IN SOCIAL
Samobor- CROATIA 2014
New world of digital inclusion
Volunteers in overcoming the
isolation of older people
Care-workers in home care and older persons are
exposed to the risk of social exclusion as they are both
often at the margins of society and likely to be the victim
of exclusion in the fast-changing digital world. ICTs and
associated competences have been shown to be a critical
component in mitigating these risks of exclusion and
helping to support an increased quality of life. The
special quality to overcome the isolation of the elderly in
many countries today are volunteers. This work is
dedicated to them and those who teach them.
Barriers to using and accessing
1. The main barrier appears to be a lack of
understanding of and confidence with ‘how it
works’. A number of fears and anxieties were
expressed about ‘doing something wrong’, as
well as internet security.
2. There is a wide variation in the extent to which
people are interested in using the internet.
However, only a minority can be defined as
For others, being ‘dismissive’ appears to be a
way to justify their lack of confidence and this
group is likely to be more open about trying the
internet if they receive appropriate encouragement
3. However, a strong sense of inertia prevails
even among those who are most interested.
Many feel it will be ‘too hard’ or that they are
‘too old to learn’ something new.
4. Affordability is also an issue for some particularly
those with the lowest incomes). However, this
appears to be outweighed by other barriers, with
several people commenting that the price of
computers and internet packages has come down.
1. Despite a low level of understanding of how the
internet works, awareness of what the internet can
do and its benefits is surprisingly high.
2. Most acknowledge that the internet is already
important (although not necessarily to them) and
expect its importance to increase further in the
3. This research identified that there are some
critical junctures and circumstances that could
trigger use of the internet in older people.
and leveraging enablers
A number of suggestions were made about practical
ways of motivating and
helping older people to access and use computers
and the internet:
– ongoing help.
Conclusions and implications
from key findings
Younger age groups (55–64) and those who are
excluded rather than dismissive are likely
to be most open to approaches designed to encourage
and enable internet take-up.
- those with long-term health conditions or mobility
- those who live in remote or rural locations;
- those who are socially isolated or lonely.
Volunteering can be personally rewarding and helps
you 'give something back' to your community.
Volunteers can choose from thousands of different
Volunteering helps you make new friends, increases
your confidence and lets you play a part in your
community. It can also give you a better chance of
getting paid work, improving your career prospects
or getting a place at university by helping you to:
- practise the skills you have
- build your confidence
- discover new hobbies and interests
- meet people who can help you find paid work
- include volunteering experience on your CV
- show employers you can keep regular hours and handle
- have things to talk about in a job interview get eferences
Other benefits of volunteering
- having fun doing something you've never tried before
- a sense of satisfaction and achievement the pportunity
to make new friends with people from diverse
backgrounds and experiences
Examples of some of the ways you
can volunteer are:
• caring for animals and wildlife
• setting up a volunteer scheme at your workplace
• spending time mentoring and befriending a young
person or refugee
• working outdoors to improve the environment
• working on local community projects
Before you start
Once you have found an organisation it is useful to go
and meet them for an informal chat and find out more
about what you would like to do. This is a chance for
you to ask questions about the volunteering
opportunity, see the place you would be working and
meet some of the people you might be working with.
Some of the points you might want
• what the role involves
• whether you will receive any expenses to help
pay for your travel and food costs
• what training is offered to help you do the role
• if there are any qualifications you can gain
• whether you will have a supervisor or mentor to
discuss your questions or concerns
1. Identify your volunteers’ motivations early.
Understand why they want to volunteer with your
organisation and determine if their needs would be
met through their volunteer experience.
2. Match their interests to the relevant volunteer
positions. Do not ask them to assume positions
they do not want.
3. Provide a comfortable place for volunteers to
interact and rest.
4. Build a volunteer-friendly atmosphere in your
organisation. Encourage your staff to acknowledge
the presence of volunteers by smiling at them or
saying thank you when they have completed their
5. Provide and prepare sufficient support facilities to
volunteers so that they can finish their ssignments
6. Identify volunteers’ training needs and provide
training which will enable them to perform their
7. Provide adequate welfare for volunteers such as
meals or refreshment when they volunteer over a
8. Celebrate successes with volunteers by throwing
them a party or give them surprise gifts.
9. Organise volunteer feedback sessions with your
management and welcome their suggestions for
the volunteer programmes
10. Publicise the contributions of volunteers to your
stakeholders through your newsletter, website or
Empathy is essential in a caring role – it’s about putting
yourself in someone else’s shoes. Empathy is all about
trying to understanding why a person feels as they do and
showing compassion. A good trick is to imagine the
person you’re volunteering with is your grandparent, or
one of your parents in the future – how do you think they
would be feeling about their situation and how would you
want them to be treated?
Person-centred care is a philosophy of providing care
that is centred around the person, and not just their
health needs. We are all individual hence it is not
appropriate to assume that because two people
have, for example, dementia or a hearing
impairment, that they both have the same care and