Ireland’s Communications Minister Pat Rabbitte gave certificates to one of the first groups of trainees to complete basic internet training as part of the latest phase of the BenefIT scheme.
The group was trained as part of the “Get Ireland Online” initiative run by ICS Skills under the BenefIT 3 scheme.
As part of the scheme, €1.88m is being provided as grant assistance to 200 community, voluntary or not-for-profit organisations to offer basic internet training across 700 locations across Ireland.
It’s the third scheme of this type, which has been run through the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources since 2008. Some 100,000 people were offered training under these three schemes.
“For me as minister, one of the most satisfying aspects of my job is seeing positive outcomes for people,” said Rabbitte at the certificate presentation event at the ICS Skills offices in Dublin.
“That’s why digital inclusion is so important to me. Without the skills to use technologies like the internet, the substantial investment being made in Ireland’s infrastructure is under utilised. As a result, our potential as a nation is not being fulfilled and opportunities are being lost.
“I want to ensure that no one is left behind – that every citizen has the opportunity to embrace our increasingly digital world. The technology is getting easier and cheaper all the time. Many services are now more easily accessed online. Training and support is available from the Government. If you are planning on being around for awhile, you may as well get online now.
“Training, like the basic training being recognised here today, is now available all over Ireland – empowering thousands of people and opening up new opportunities for them. I would certainly encourage anyone – whatever their background or age – who was thinking that they might like to explore the many opportunities the internet has to offer, to avail of these training opportunities,” he said.