Stacey Handcock has seen firsthand how learning to use online banking can boost the confidence of CUA members.

Stacey is a Community and Events Specialist at CUA, Australia’s largest member-owned financial institution. She works in CUA’s North Lakes Community Hub in Queensland and is one of 12 CUA staff members who have been trained to deliver new Digital Springboard courses as part of the Connected Future initiative.

Connected Future is a partnership between Infoxchange, CUA and Red Cross Australia that aims to give people across Australia the digital skills they need to confidently manage their money online and help boost financial and social outcomes in the community.

As part of the initiative we recently released two new Digital Springboard courses: Tools and tips to keep your budget on track and Simple ways to keep your money safe online. Staff and volunteers from CUA and ten other Digital Springboard partner organisations have so far been trained on the new curriculum, which can be delivered online or in-person.

Stacey Handcock sitting at her computer

Stacey delivered five online sessions as part of Scams Awareness Week earlier this month.

“The announcement of the Connected Future Partnership was a great opportunity for us to volunteer and get involved in delivering these sessions digitally to anyone in Australia and also to deliver to our local community,” she says.

“The two new courses really help give participants the confidence to feel in control when it comes to how to effectively identify scams and how to avoid them.”

Stacey says members have been keen to take up opportunities to learn more about online banking and budgeting with team members’ help at the North Lakes hub.

“With the current COVID-19 environment, it has become more important for people to have the skills to get online and manage their budgets and set achievable financial goals,” she says.

“The budgeting course covers different types of budgeting methods, provides tools and resources to help you achieve your financial goals. These courses provide practical tips that will help strengthen the financial capabilities of everyday Australians.”

CUA team members will continue to deliver Digital Springboard training on managing your money safely online and keeping your finances on track virtually through interactive workshops. When COVID-19 pandemic restrictions ease, CUA also plans to run the courses as face-to-face modules in CUA’s North Lakes Hub and possibly from other locations across its network nationally.

 

Find online or in-person courses.

Find out how to become a Digital Springboard partner and start delivering free courses to your community.

To coincide with National Scams Awareness Week (17–21 August), Australian Red CrossCredit Union Australia (CUA) and Infoxchange have launched new free training courses to help people look after their money online. This involves how to identify and avoid scams, an all-too-common hazard of online money management that often affects the most vulnerable.

The three organisations have partnered to provide training in the digital skills people need to confidently manage their money online.

The partnership provides free practical, face-to-face and online courses for all Australians, to help boost financial and social outcomes in the community. While some courses are delivered in local communities, a special online course has been scheduled for 19 August, which means all Australians can be involved.

“As more of everyday life moves into the digital realm, people who are not online experience increasing exclusion. This includes exclusion from banking services, health and government services, employment and social opportunities. This is even more relevant in the current context, due to COVID-19 restrictions,” said Rushda Halith, Australian Red Cross Head of Community Programs. “We’ve been working with vulnerable people to design solutions to make digital tools more accessible.”

According to the latest Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) Targeting Scams report, last year Australians lost more than $634 million to scams in more than 353,000 reports. These figures are based on reports to the ACCC’s Scamwatch, which captures information on types of scams and losses, and publishes data online monthly.

“Since COVID-19 hit, more people than ever have been experiencing financial stress, and that’s really highlighted a need to help the most vulnerable people in our community to make more informed decisions when managing their money online,” said Infoxchange CEO David Spriggs.

“In this increasingly digital world, having practical digital skills and the confidence to use digital technology is so important. For a lot of us, using the internet and digital technology is part of everyday life, but there are many people who are missing out on the critical opportunities that technology offers.”

Young family gathered around laptop

CUA Chief Customer Officer Megan Keleher said CUA team members would leverage their financial and digital knowledge to deliver the training to CUA members and more broadly through Infoxchange and Red Cross community networks.

“We see firsthand every day how important it is to lift the digital and financial capability of vulnerable Australians and connect them with the support they need to build a better financial future,” she said.

“Through this training we’ll help equip Australians with practical skills and knowledge to help them keep their money safe online, manage their privacy – and also improve their financial skills through budgeting tools and tips.

“We’re really pleased to be involved in this initiative which builds on our heritage of breaking down the barriers to financial inclusion.”

All courses can be accessed through Digital Springboard, a program by Infoxchange and Google to help people learn the digital skills they need to thrive in work and life.

Register for the 19 August online course at: www.digitalspringboard.org.au/find-courses

Local community organisations can become partners to deliver courses to people in their local area: www.digitalspringboard.org.au/partner-with-us

In just 12 months single mum Danielle went from being the newbie in town, struggling to find a job after a long career break, to coordinating the Digital Springboard program at her local neighbourhood centre.

Digital Springboard is Infoxchange’s digital skills training program with Google. The program recently saw its 10,000th participant, an incredible achievement which could not have been realised without our local partners and team of more than 1000 trainers delivering Digital Springboard courses in their communities.

Danielle didn’t expect to have a career teaching digital skills. She’d been out of the workforce for a long time caring for her four children and had just moved from Sydney to the beachside town of Pottsville in New South Wales. It was difficult finding work and she was feeling dejected after a few knock backs.

By chance she started up a conversation with her next-door neighbour who had been in a similar situation years earlier. She recommended volunteering at the local Pottsville Beach Neighbourhood Centre as a way for Danielle to get some current work experience.

Danielle started as a volunteer digital mentor at the centre soon after. Having no formal qualifications in tech, she felt daunted at first but quickly got the hang of it.

When the centre was awarded a grant through Digital Springboard to expand their digital skills programming, Danielle was first in line for the coordinator role.

“The funding proposal was written with Danielle in mind because of her enthusiasm, interpersonal and organisational skills,” says centre manager Angela Maxwell.

“It didn’t take long for us to recognise that Danielle was a great choice to coordinate the project.”

Danielle was able to begin working on Digital Springboard in a paid role, teaching herself the curriculum via train-the-trainer videos and resources supplied by Infoxchange.

“I was a bit scared that it was too big a role for someone that hasn’t done an­y teaching before, or delivered any courses,” says Danielle.

But she found the Digital Springboard resources easy to follow and was excited to find that she was a natural teacher.

“Most people would be able to deliver a course. You don’t need to have a training background because it’s so easy to follow.”

Danielle says she found it inspiring being able to help people build their digital skills and see them thrive, including starting successful businesses. She says she has also flourished both personally and professionally.

“I got references and I got a job out of it … I’m getting more money and things for my family, and I gained a whole lot of confidence in what I could do,” she says.

“It really pays off to give it a go, get out there and get amongst it. It’s above and beyond my expectations of what I thought would happen in 12 months.”


By coming on board as a delivery partner and offering Digital Springboard courses, your organisation can also help improve the digital skills of your local community. Visit the Digital Springboard website to find out how you can get involved.

Find our more about Pottsville Beach Neighbourhood Centre in their Digital Springboard partner profile.

When we launched Digital Springboard with Google last year we set ourselves a very ambitious goal – we wanted to address Australia’s digital skills shortage by delivering face-to-face training to more than 10,000 people across the country.

Only 18 months later we’re absolutely thrilled to have welcomed our 10,000th participant to a Digital Springboard session this week (a spreadsheets for beginners course delivered by the Youth Education Preparation Program in beautiful Hervey Bay in Queensland!

Digital Springboard was developed by Infoxchange and Google in response to the persistent digital skills gap in Australia that prevents many people from realising the full benefit of our increasingly digital world.

The program improves the digital skills of diverse and marginalised communities while also supporting transitions to work and career growth through courses that build job readiness skills, as well as more in-depth topics like social media strategy and an introduction to coding.

The courses are delivered face-to-face in partnership with more than 150 community groups, libraries and not-for-profits – a list that’s still growing!

Selfie - Digital Springboard participants in South Australia

We’re really proud of the impact that Digital Springboard has had in communities all across Australia since we ran our first course in Perth at a Google Digital Garage event in July last year. Since then, we’ve had the great privilege of supporting incredible people in Gundagai, the Barossa Valley, Shepparton and beyond to boost their digital skills.

We’ve heard some amazing stories along the way from the people who’ve come along to our sessions.

A chef who’d been out of work for some time had created a CV with his job network provider but wasn’t getting any job offers. After he completed our Digital Springboard Build a CV course and learned about online tools that could strengthen his CV, he got the first position he applied for. He’s full of praise about the course and the way it was taught.

I also loved hearing from Nina Piotrowicz from Cootamundra in NSW. When Nina’s mother-in-law became very ill, Nina stepped up to help with the family antiques shop. She looked for new ways that she could help grow the business and thought one way would be to build the shop’s online presence. She wasn’t quite sure how to go about it until she went along to a Digital Springboard course on social media.

After attending the course, Nina felt more confident using social media to attract new customers and as a result of her efforts the number of customers visiting the shop has doubled.

Nina told us, “I live in a small, regional town, so having a session like Digital Springboard available on my doorstep was fantastic. It really delved into the personal challenges faced by each business.”

It’s not just these individual stories that have got us so excited either. We’re now seeing Australia make much needed progress in terms of digital inclusion, with advances in South Australia according to the latest Australian Digital Inclusion Index. In SA alone, we’ve supported over 2,500 people to improve their digital skills in conjunction with the South Australian Public Library Service and other dedicated local partners. Together, we’re delighted to see the state’s digital inclusion score improve and we’re committed to ensuring it continues on that upward trajectory.

Our data shows that participants across the board feel more knowledgeable about the topic and more confident putting their new digital skills into practise after attending a Digital Springboard course. We’re particularly proud to see the courses having a great impact on participants from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander backgrounds, young people, refugees and people who are unemployed.

For anyone interested in more numbers, we’ve created a fantastic report that shows Digital Springboard’s reach and impact in more detail – you can view it online here.

The cherry on top for all of us is how well our curriculum and resources have been received among our delivery partners. Tara Lee, Digital Literacy Coordinator at City of Prospect, told us, “Digital Springboard is exactly what libraries and not-for-profits need to empower our community with digital skills”.

Digital springboard team at a Grow with Google event

I want to say a huge thank you to Google.org and the Google Australia team for their incredible support of Digital Springboard. Their contributions have been invaluable in helping us to reach people across Australia.

We’re excited about the years ahead and the opportunities we have to build on our achievements with Digital Springboard, helping to close Australia’s digital skills gap by delivering the digital skills people need for work and life.

– David Spriggs, CEO, Infoxchange

When Nina Piotrowicz’s mother-in-law became ill, Nina stepped up to help with the family antiques shop. The shop, which is in the regional town of Cootamundra, New South Wales, is her mother-in-law’s happy place. 

Nina wanted to make it even better for her, so she looked for new ways that she could assist the business. Nina thought one way to help would be to build the shop’s online presence, but she wasn’t quite sure how to go about it. Then she attended a Digital Springboard course about social media.

After attending the course, Nina’s confidence using social media grew. It made her realise the importance of developing a social media strategy to attract new customers.

As a result, Nina changed how the shop used social media to better showcase their distinctive collectables – and the number of customers visiting the shop has since doubled.

Nina is thrilled with these results and is looking forward to supporting and growing her family’s business even more.

Nina says, “I live in a small, regional town, so having a session like Digital Springboard available on my doorstep was fantastic. It really delved into the personal challenges faced by each business.”

Nina in her family's antiques shop

We’re thrilled to announce a new collaboration between Infoxchange, Australian Red Cross and Credit Union Australia (CUA) that builds on Digital Springboard to improve the digital and financial capability of vulnerable community members across Australia.

A staggering 2.5 million people in Australia are not online. And as the pace of digital change accelerates, the gap is widening between the digitally savvy and those who lack the confidence or skills to fully participate in the online world.

To tackle the challenge head on, Infoxchange, Australian Red Cross and CUA today announced a ground-breaking new collaboration, Connected Future, to coincide with World Computer Literacy Day.

Infoxchange currently offers digital skills training through our Digital Springboard program with Google, which has provided around 10,000 people with training since it launched in 2018. Infoxchange CEO David Spriggs says the Connected Future program will build on the success of Digital Springboard to improve financial capability.

“Many of the people with the most to gain from the social, educational and financial benefits of being online are missing out, and those who are digitally excluded often lack the financial skills to manage their everyday finances,” says David.

“Through our collaboration, CUA, Red Cross and Infoxchange will bring deep expertise in helping vulnerable groups to develop skills to confidently manage their money online. Working together, we can create a unique and more holistic training program that helps lift financial capability – skills that will be life changing for many people.”

CUA Chief Customer Officer Megan Keleher says that CUA research highlights the growing divide between digital natives and those who aren’t digitally literate.

“While 79 percent of those aged 18-24 use a mobile banking app for most of their banking, 50 percent of those aged 65+ say they would never use a mobile banking app.”

Red Cross Head of Community Programs Rushda Halith says the collaboration is addressing a very real need in the community.

“While we know older Australians can be digitally isolated, digital and financial literacy barriers can be faced by people with a disability, culturally diverse communities, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and other vulnerable groups. This includes low income households, people experiencing unemployment or those living in remote areas,” says Rushda.

Starting in 2020, Connected Future will see:

  • Financial education modules integrated into the Digital Springboard program;
  • An opportunity for up to 1,000 CUA team members nationally to participate in a skilled volunteering program helping to deliver training and outreach to vulnerable and at-risk groups;
  • A co-design approach involving the three partners and other community stakeholders, which will identify and develop innovative solutions to help reach digitally excluded Australians at scale.

The Digital Innovation Festival Victoria aims to grow Victoria’s digital economy, create jobs and fast track industry growth. With more than 400 events over 2 weeks, the event brings together a range of digital innovation and technology events from across the state.

We’re excited to partner with The Gordon to present the Digital Springboard course Create an online professional profile on 4 September at the Geelong Tech School. See The Gordon’s full DIF program below.

Details

4 September 2019

Geelong Tech School – at The Gordon
Latrobe Terrace
Geelong, VIC 3220
View Map

Full program

Create an online professional profile (including setting up your LinkedIn profile).


9.30-11.30amRegister >
Skills for work: Topics will include building a basic online professional profile on LinkedIn.


1.00-3.00pmTechReady students only. No Eventbrite booking required
Drone discovery workshop: Find out how your organisation can integrate drone technology safely, legally and effectively.


 1.00-3.00pmRegister >
Cybersecurity: Find out about online threats designed to compromise data, and why Cybersecurity is so important today.


9.30-11.30amRegister >
Creative thinking: During this workshop you will build on your skills in creative thinking through an immersive hands onon experience.


9.30-11.30amRegister >
Tinker time: Learn how to design, build and solve a table maze using block programming and electronics.


9.30-11.30amRegister >
Tinker time: Learn how to design, build and solve a table maze using block programming and electronics.


2.00-4.00pmRegister >

Digital Innovation Festival 2019 banner

Join Digital Springboard for a free day of professional development focusing on using human-centred design to create programs and services for the community.

This is a one day workshop available on Monday 20 May or Tuesday 21 May 2019. You only need to register for one of the days.

PLEASE NOTE THAT MONDAY’S SESSION IS NOW SOLD OUT.

Hetzel Lecture Theatre
State Library of SA
North Terrace
Adelaide, SA 5000

MONDAY SESSION – SOLD OUT

REGISTER FOR THE TUESDAY SESSION


9.30am
Arrival

  • Registration
  • Find out more about Digital Springboard’s face-to-face digital skills courses and how they’re being delivered in local communities across Australia

10.00am–10.15am
Welcome and introductions

10.15am – 12.00pm
World café

Let’s get to know each other and hear about the work we’re all doing in the community

  • “Mapping out” activity: what are the wins and challenges we see when working with the community?
  • Identify themes: what are the problems and challenges we’re all facing?
  • Learning the art of the “How Might We Statement”: how to reframe our problems and challenges to begin our research and co-design process

12.00pm–12.45pm
Enjoy lunch on us!

12.45pm – 1.15pm
Introduction to human-centred design

1.15pm – 1.45pm
The 12 commandments of human-centred design: Digital Springboard as an example in practice

1.45pm – 2.00pm
Tea break

2.00pm – 4.30pm
Human-centred design express challenge

  • Design challenge warm up
  • The Double Diamond process
  • Learn by doing!
  • How can we take this to the real world?

4.30 – 4.45pm
Wrap up, feedback and connect

 

MONDAY SESSION – SOLD OUT

REGISTER FOR THE TUESDAY SESSION

In Morwell, situated in Victoria’s Gippsland region, we partnered with #GippslandDigital to bring a one-day tech fest to members of the local community.

Participants were treated to a tour of the magnificent Gippsland Tech School where they met Baxter the friendly robot, played virtual Pacman, learned about 360 degree virtual reality, and took part in the Digital Springboard short course Get started with code.

Participants said they found the course challenging but exciting, and appreciated the simple, step-by-step resources.

One of the participants, Julia, knew nothing about coding before attending the Digital Springboard course – in fact she had to Google what it was on the way to the session! But she still got a lot out of it. “The best thing is you don’t need to be an IT expert to learn about coding and give it a go,” she said.

Josie Rose from Noweyung Learn Local said, “I think that Gippsland and young people lack opportunity when it comes to digital skills training. Coding is one of the employability skills of the future and I think that we as educators should also get on board.”

“I would say to any provider or not-for-profit who wants to equip the students for the future that they need to look at the Digital Springboard curriculum because it’s amazing. It’s just so detailed and so well done, why wouldn’t you?”

Signing up as a Digital Springboard delivery partner is an easy 3-step process. Find out more.

Participants at the Morwell Digital Springboard event
Participants at the Morwell Digital Springboard event
Participants at Digital Springboard regional NSW events
Participants at our regional NSW events

Digital Springboard is driven by local delivery partners working with communities to deliver the free digital skills courses.

We provide training to all our partners to help them deliver their chosen courses. Train the trainer sessions may be delivered in-person, in webinars, or via online trainer videos. Last month we delivered face-to-face train the trainer sessions for delivery partners in Footscray, a diverse, multi-cultural suburb in Melbourne’s inner west.

Footscray is also home to the headquarters of the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre (ASRC), a Digital Springboard delivery partner and independent not-for-profit organisation whose programs support and empower people seeking asylum.

Abiola Ajetomobi from the ASRC Innovation Hub joined us at our train the trainer day to introduce the day’s program. In her address, she spoke about the importance of Digital Springboard in building the capacity of the people that they support through the ASRC.

“We know very well that a critical gap for people seeking asylum is digital literacy,” said Abiola.

“So many of them have smart phones, so they have access to social media. But when it comes to accessing jobs, understanding job opportunities, tapping into networks, engaging with the community at large… it becomes a bit challenging if you don’t have the right level of digital literacy and knowledge.”

Participants at train the trainer in Footscray
Participants at train the trainer sessions in Footscray, 22 November 2018

The ASRC currently supports over 3000 people annually who are seeking asylum, from when they first arrive and need help talking over the visa process, to navigating accommodation, getting advice about putting their children in schools, finding material aid and legal assistance.

Joining as a Digital Springboard partner means that the ASRC can further enhance their work in meeting the critical unmet needs of people seeking asylum.

Abiola explained that Digital Springboard offers important capacity building opportunities for their staff and volunteers that will better upskill their members around digital skills.

“I thought ‘wow, what a fantastic innovative project,’” she said.

“We know that in Australia, volunteers play a huge role in any organisation. So for Infoxchange and Google to partner together to have this digital literacy and digital capacity building opportunity for our volunteers, our staff, for community members to be able to support one another – I think it’s really phenomenal.”

The ASRC will begin delivering Digital Springboard courses in 2019.

Thank you to the staff and volunteers of ASRC and our other partner organisations for taking time out of their busy schedules to attend our train the trainer day hosted at VU Metro West.

Read more about the ASRC on their website.