Singapore – The Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), together with the support from corporate sponsors 1 , will provide 900 pre-qualified 2 low-income households the opportunity to sign up for home broadband and tablets, at no cost. The other low-income households can also enjoy subsidised home broadband with the option to own a tablet. As part of IMDA’s Digital Inclusion efforts to empower the vulnerable segments with access to technology, the new IM Bonding Learning Project complements the aim by providing 1-to-1 dedicated tutorials for seniors from low-income households to learn how to use the tablet device and to navigate the Internet.
The IM Bonding Learning Project is a tripartite collaboration among Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), Lions Befrienders (LB) and POSB, leveraging the respective parties’ area of expertise in the public, people and private domains, to strengthen communities through technology. The senior participants at the workshop were those who were keen to learn more about using the tablet and the Internet. With guidance from the staff of POSB, seniors aged between 60s to 80s experienced first-hand the immediacy of technology and how a technology tool and the Internet can bring them closer to loved ones, and bring conveniences to their lives.
Senior Minister of State for the Ministry of Communications and Information & Ministry of Education, Dr Janil Puthucheary, attended the session to encourage and recognise the efforts of the seniors who had stepped forward to learn. The IM Bonding Learning Project comprises eight 3-hour per sessions, and will focus on using technology for social connectedness. Participants from low-income households can now have the chance to try out the tablet, and learn different useful IT skills including basic introduction to the device and Internet, Digital TV, e-Communication, social media, POSB’s Digibank and Paylah! apps, and more. The entire curriculum is spread out over an 8-week learning journey.
The Home Access Programme is part of the Digital Inclusion effort under IMDA. To-date about 8,000 low-income households 3 have benefitted from the programme since 2014. The Home Access Programme targets to benefit another 16,000 low-income families starting from April 2017.