New tech group con­nects Her­ald Is­land

North Harbour News - - YOUR PAPER, YOUR PLACE - AMY BAKER

It’s a well-connected com­mu­nity, at least face-to-face, but a new tech­nol­ogy project is help­ing Her­ald Is­land res­i­dents to cre­ate on­line con­nec­tions too.

The com­mu­nity-led project started with a two-hour week­end work­shop which dis­cussed on­line safety.

Project leader and res­i­dent Louise Tay­lor said most who at­tended the work­shop were al­ready on­line but had spe­cific ques­tions around us­ing the Cloud, on­line safety and per­sonal de­vices.

Tay­lor said fu­ture top­ics would be led by the needs of the group.

‘‘We’re re­ally flex­i­ble about how this evolves,’’ she said. ‘‘It’s re­ally around what the need is.’’

She said it was also about pro­vid­ing an op­por­tu­nity for par­tic­i­pants get to­gether, to con­nect to fam­ily who might not live lo­cally and pur­sue their own in­ter­ests on­line.

Around 10 peo­ple at­tended the first work­shop held at the Her­ald Is­land Fire Sta­tion on July 8. The group is run by Tay­lor and three other vol­un­teers.

Res­i­dents Richard and Margret Brands at­tended the work­shop and said it was sim­i­lar to a fo­rum in terms of dif­fer­ent peo­ple sharing their knowl­edge.

Margret, a for­mer tech­nol­ogy teacher, said, ‘‘We all were there, al­most ‘net­bot­ing’ each other to find out what each other knows.’’

Richard said the ses­sion gave him con­fi­dence and let him know he wasn’t alone in terms of his learn­ing.

‘‘Shared knowl­edge more power.

‘‘A lot of peo­ple - although they have net­works for older peo­ple, for ex­am­ple - don’t avail them­selves of those fa­cil­i­ties [like uni­ver­si­ties],’’ he said.

‘‘But if it’s in a vil­lage at­mos­phere or a vil­lage hall, they’ll go they’ll is even go down the road to that.’’

Tay­lor, a so­cial worker, had the idea for the work­shop as part of a lead­er­ship course she is com­plet­ing.

She said while her course only goes for five months, she in­tends the tech­nol­ogy project to be longterm so it will even­tu­ally run it­self.

‘‘I’m re­ally pas­sion­ate about con­nect­ing peo­ple in com­mu­ni­ties and cre­at­ing net­works,’’ she said. ‘‘For me it was about con­nect­ing in with my com­mu­nity as well. It’s per­sonal as well as for oth­ers.’’

In­ter­net con­nec­tion is still needed at the fire sta­tion to en­able to the project to run smoothly, and Tay­lor said she is in­ter­ested to hear from any­one who can help. The next ses­sion will likely run in Septem­ber.

AMY BAKER/STUFF

Her­ald Is­land res­i­dents Richard and Margret Brands felt the group was like a fo­rum for knowl­edge sharing.

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