I can’t tell you how excited I am about learning all this technology, and how pleased I am with the support I am getting from the Digital Champion!
— Learner, April 2021

"We managed to download Zoom onto her phone and connect via video call. We had a play around with flipping the camera so that next week we can connect via Zoom and use the camera to look at her laptop, so hopefully I can try and troubleshoot the wifi problem. She seemed really happy with the progress and I was too!"

Digital Champion, April 2021

What happens when I contact Healthwatch for digital support?

  • Firstly, we'll have a chat over the phone. We complete an assessment that takes about 15 minutes. We'll ask you about your devices, and the digital skills you already have. You'll tell us what you'd like to learn, and let us know about your availability, the days and times when it's easiest for you to receive support.
  • When a Digital Champion becomes available we'll let you know their name, and the phone number they use for their volunteering. You'll know to expect a call from them. We'll also pass on your details and tell them about your skills need.
  • You'll have an introductory session with your Digital Champion over the phone. You'll get to know each other, agree on your learning goals, and decide whether your future sessions will take place over the phone or on Zoom (video call).
  • All our volunteers have an enhanced DBS check. (DBS stands for Disclosure and Barring Service. This service helps prevent unsuitable people from becoming volunteers.)

What if I don't have a smartphone, a tablet, or a laptop?

You'll need access to a device, but if you don't we can connect you to schemes that might be able to provide you with one, such as Mer-IT or WaveLength

How much support will I get?

You'll get three one-to-one sessions. Each session will normally last an hour and will be focused on your learning goals. We will ask you some questions about each session afterwards, to evaluate our service.

After the one-to-one sessions are over you can come along to our group sessions. These events take place on Zoom. The first half is normally taken up by a guest trainer looking at a particular theme, such as online shopping or email. The second half of the event is made up of smaller groups of learners matched with Digital Champions. You can reinforce your existing learning or pick up new skills. Check our events page for details of upcoming sessions.

Our Digital Champions will also share important tips on safe internet browsing, and avoiding scams.

Get started

Call our Community Link Worker, Philippa Russell on 07538 764436 or send her an email.

Get in touch

Get help to access health services online

  • Our volunteer Digital Champions can show you how to use online platforms such as e-consult to request a GP appointment. These platforms can be intimidating if you are not used to the internet. If you need help to access health services digitally let us know.
  • We also host training events covering a range of digital activities, including e-consult and NHS digital platforms. Check our events page to see what events are coming up.

"I think the event was really accessible. I was able to follow the step-by-step approach to complete e-consult, filling the form in with my own tablet and with my own queries at the same time. I am not so frightened of it now!"

Attendee, 'How to use e-consult to communicate with your GP practice’, March 2021

What about face-to-face support?

For people who want face-to-face support or find it difficult to engage with remote sessions, there are a limited number of spaces available for meeting up with a Digital Champion in person.

When you attend a face-to-face support session you will be asked to wear a face-covering. Sessions will take place outdoors or indoors in a well-ventilated space. Other restrictions may apply. Contact Philippa for more information about face-to-face support.