Wednesday, 20 May 2020
Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment
949. To ask the Minister for Communications, Climate Action and Environment if funding for the getting citizens online grant scheme has been cancelled; if so, the impact on providers that were part way through the scheme; his plans for a modified programme to be established in view of the increased need to get older persons online due to Covid-19; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6950/20]
The Digital Skills for Citizens Scheme provides digital skills training for people who have never used the internet with a view to removing a key barrier to digital adoption. Since 2017 over 57,000 people have participated in training under the Scheme.
All organisations delivering digital skills training under the Scheme have been pre-funded to train a specific number of people in line with their respective grant agreements. The ability to deliver training classes has necessarily been impacted by Covid-19 pandemic.My officials will work with these organisations to find safe solutions which comply with public health guidance, to afford them the opportunity to deliver training and meet their targets.
The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to provide support and opportunities to empower everyone to get online.With this in mind the future path of the Scheme is currently under consideration by my Department.